UNITY PAPER

TitleUNITY PAPER
ClientWIJEYA NEWSPAPERS
Product / ServiceADA NEWSPAPER
CategoryB03. Corporate Reputation
EntrantLEO BURNETT SOLUTIONS Colombo, SRI LANKA
Entrant Company LEO BURNETT SOLUTIONS Colombo, SRI LANKA
Advertising Agency LEO BURNETT SOLUTIONS Colombo, SRI LANKA

The Campaign

Four years after the end of Sri Lanka's brutal civil war, the process of reconciliation was still not complete. With the traditional New Year coming up, the one event celebrated by both the communities involved, Ada, a mass-market daily newspaper, wanted us to find a way for it to contribute to the reconciliation process. Our solution to bridging the gap between two communities who speak completely different languages, was to reach out to both of them by creating Sri Lanka’s first bilingual newspaper. The campaign started with us working with the editors and journalists of the paper to create content, which included articles that allowed each community to learn the other's perspective. We also helped design a masthead and had input on the front page. The next step was executing a week-long promotional campaign for the bilingual newspaper on social and traditional media which got people talking, like celebrities and dignitaries, and generated publicity for the 'Unity Paper' on other mainstream outlets like TV news programmes and different newspapers. The PR campaign was a success with many celebrities and individuals commenting resulting in over 220,000 likes, shares and views, which adds up to 15% of all Sri Lankan Facebook users. Free publicity was given on news programmes and the front covers for four leading dailies. The Ada Unity Paper, on the day of publication, saw a 20% increase in sales which resulted in the paper being sold out.

The Brief

The goal of this campaign was to reach out to both the communities affected by Sri Lanka's brutal civil war. We believed the Ada Unity Paper would get people talking about the issues related to reconciliation, increase the profile of the paper and boost sales.

Results

The PR campaign was a success with many celebrities and individuals commenting resulting in over 220,000 likes, shares and views, which adds up to 15% of all Sri Lankan Facebook users. Free publicity was given on news programmes and the front covers for four leading dailies. The Ada Unity Paper, on the day of publication, saw a 20% increase in sales which resulted in the paper being sold out and led to the paper being the second most consistently read newspaper in the country.

Execution

Our solution to bridging the gap between two communities who speak completely different languages, was to reach out to both of them by creating Sri Lanka’s first bilingual newspaper. The campaign started with us working with the editors and journalists of the paper to create content, which included articles that allowed each community to learn the other's perspective. We also helped design a masthead and had input on the front page. The next step was executing a week-long promotional campaign for the bilingual newspaper on social and traditional media which got people talking, like celebrities and dignitaries, and generated publicity for the 'Unity Paper' on other mainstream outlets like TV news programmes and different newspapers.

The Situation

Despite Sri Lanka being very ethnically diverse and having more than one official language, the country had never had a newspaper that was in more than one language. Ada wanted help close the divide between the two communities by creating the country's first bilingual paper. But for this to be a success it knew it needed the support of other media outlets especially because it would be speaking to an audience that did not normally read media in the language Ada was in.

The Strategy

For our campaign to promote the Ada Unity Paper, we wanted to convey the idea of two communities coming together while at the same time educating each community on the other's language. To fulfil these criteria, we came up with a simple idea where we united the letters of each language based on sound. This way a member of one community would know the sound of a letter from the other community's alphabet. The idea of uniting characters would be executed through symbols which featured one similar sounding letter from each community's alphabet. These symbols would then be taken onto traditional and social media like Facebook, Sri Lanka's number one site, where people would be able to talk about them and share them leading to endorsements and coverage from mainstream outlets.

Credits

Name Company Position
Seninda Bandara Starcom Worldwide Sri Lanka Media Manager
Jehan Adahan Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Photographer
Tasneem Siddeeque Arc Worldwide Sri Lanka Public Relations Executive
Kishani Gunasekera Arc Worldwide Sri Lanka Director Public Relations
Prasad Chaturanga Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Illustrator
Jayantha Liyanage Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Digitial Artist
Nilusha Wanasinghe Starcom Worldwide Sri Lanka Senior Media Manager
Anuradha Cooray Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Senior Executive Production
Ranjith Perera Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Senior Manager -Digital Art Production
Mehnaz Ilhamdeen Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Production Manager
Manoj Dharmawardhane Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Copy Writer
Somasegeram Nadarajah Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Copy Writer
Malaka Samit Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Copy Writer
Ranjana Amaradeva Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Group Head/Copy Writer
Farzad Mohideen Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Copy Writer
Eraj Wirasinha Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Associate Creative Director/Copy Writer
Michael Holsinger Starcom Worldwide Sri Lanka Chief Executive Officer
Chaturangi De Silva Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Art Director
Sithum Walter Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Art Director
Subhash Pinnapola Leo Burnett Solutions Inc Executive Creative Director