Short List
CategoryC01. Use of Digital in a PR campaign
Idea Creation WATCONSULT Mumbai, INDIA

The Campaign

We created the World's first chess game with a powerless queen via a website and an app wherein the visitor/player played with a powerless queen (no moves allowed) against the computer which had a powerful queen. This was rolled out as a #PowerlessQueen challenge across India challenging people to try and win. As people lost, we prompted them share the message and to donate to the cause so that they can empower a girl child with education. The idea showcased how difficult it is to win in chess and as a metaphor in society as well when the queen is a powerless one. Hence proving how societies cannot win if its queens (women) are not empowered.


The game was launched on the mobile-friendly campaign website www.PowerlessQueen.com and the campaign video with Woman Grandmaster Tania Sachev was launched on social platforms (Twitter, Facebook & YouTube) in which she encouraged people and fellow chess players to play the game on the website. People who lost could take two actions - they could share their experince on Twitter & Facebook as well as donate to the cause of Nanhi Kali for the education of the girl child. To take the concept of Powerless Queen into the physical world, The Chess School of India and The Coach Crew came together to organize chess tournaments which was participated in by school students from across schools.

#PowerlessQueen trending topic in India Donations that sponsored 40,000 hours of education for underprivileged girls. Earned Media worth 118 Million INR 1 Million Views on campaign video 7,465 Tweets 300 Million Impressions with coverage on India's national TV channel, DD News alongwith NDTV another large Tv network doing a story. 52,000+ Game Plays on website 10,500+ App Downloads A chess club in France hosted a #PowerlessQueen themed game at their monthly tournament. International Chess Grandmasters organically got involved with the campaign and further spread the word. These were: - World Chess Champion 'Vishwanathan Anand' - Hungarian Grandmaster ''Anna Rudolf' - Hungarian Grandmaster and Ambassador of Chess and Education & UN Planet 50-50 Champion 'Judit Polgar' - Two-time United States Women's Champion 'Jennifer Shahade' - Four-time Dutch Chess Champion 'Anish Giri' - Five-time Danish Chess Champion and current coach to World number one Magnus Carlsen, 'Peter Heine Nielsen' Powerless Queen will soon be rolled out as gender-equality teaching tool across schools in India.

The Situation

#PowerlessQueen was organically noticed by the chess world with global chess players taking the challenge and sharing their experience on social media. Overall, the campaign generated 118 Million INR in Earned Media via coverage across print, digital and Tv as well. It was covered organically by the national TV news channel in India DD News by reach which reaches over 500 million people in India. It was also featured in NDTV 247 another private TV channel. In print it was covered in the national magazines like Business world and got global coverage across top online sites.

The Strategy

Chess is a game played by the educated and elite in India but watched by millions. India is among top 10 chess playing countries in the world. As of 2017, India has more than 47 chess grandmasters. 80-100 Million Indian viewers watched the 2013 match between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen. Through our use of chess, we wanted to reach out to an audience who could not only donate to Nanhi Kali (NGO) but also influence others and attract attention of a larger audience. So to ensure we reached the right audience, we brought in India's #2 Chess Player, Woman Grandmaster 'Tania Sachdev'. She challenged people and fellow chess players to take the Powerless Queen Challenge. Once they played the challenge and lost, they were prompted by a call to action to donate to Nanhi Kali and led to their website


Name Company Position
Team WATConsult WATConsult Team
Supporting Webpage