The winter of 2020 is probably the coldest in recent years. For children in China’s rural areas, the freezing winter is even harder to bear. Most hand-washing basins are set up outdoors in rural areas, making the water flowing out extremely cold. Sometimes, pipes are even frozen, and the children there have no way to wash their hands. Such difficulties in maintaining hygiene has led to children being more vulnerable in the flu season.
To attract people’s attention to this issue, Safeguard built a pop-up store called “Health Charging Station” with a hand-washing basin in Hangzhou On December 19, 2020. They invited residents to take a “20 seconds Freezing Water Handwashing Challenge”. For every participant joining the project, the brand will equip one more rural child with hand-washing education and facility.
Celebrity Gao Yuanyuan and some KOLs were invited to participate in the challenge, and the whole event was live broadcasted on Weibo. A lot of people were attracted by the event and came to the station to take the challenge. Those who could not go to the scene took part in the campaign by watching the live broadcast and signing for the “Health Delivery Ambassador” certificate online. The campaign was reported by numerous media outlets, and it got more than 300 million views on Weibo. By the end of December of 2020, Safeguard had provided 957 hand-washing facilities for rural areas, with more than 110 thousand children benefitting from it.
The great success of this campaign lies in its emotional appeal and experiential marketing tactics. Safeguard created a character named Xiao Hu, a lovely and brave child from China’s rural area. They made a video and a series of posters to familiarize the audience with the tough circumstance in the rural area from Xiao Hu’s perspective. In the pop-up station, the freezing water hand-washing basin gave the participants a chance to directly experience the circumstance that children like Xiao Hu faced. Xiao Hu was also the one who invited people to take the challenge. When participants washed their hands in freezing water, the screen above the basin showed Xiao Hu washing his hands, which built a bridge between participants and the children in rural areas. One of the participants said she almost cried when she heard Xiao Hu’s voice. She could not help thinking how difficult it would be for those children to wash
their hands in the winter.
In the long run, the challenge is part of the “Spread Health across China” program which aims to help at least 100 million Chinese people develop correct hand-washing habits before 2025. In social mission marketing, it is crucial for a brand to choose a particular goal that matches itself. Based on the brand image, Safeguard wisely defines its social mission in terms of good health and well-being. Under this framework, it has successfully demonstrated its corporate social responsibility through its various public welfare projects.
Li, F. (2021, February 1). Safeguard helps children wash hands properly. iDEALShanghai. Retrieved from https://www.shine.cn/feature/lifestyle/2102014136/