New social movement goes wild online

Guerrilla street tactics are promoting a new social networking site that aims to protect Canada's public wilderness areas.

The Big Wild, a new social movement with a mandate to advance large-scale wilderness protection in Canada, is leveraging the viral nature of the online social networking phenomenon to mobilize support for its cause.

Founded by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) and Mountain Equipment Co-op, the social movement will launch with guerrilla marketing stunts in Victoria, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Halifax and St. John’s that will introduce Canadians to its social networking site,

‘The goal of The Big Wild is to establish an influential Canada-wide movement to protect at least half of Canada’s public land and water in a permanently wild state,’ says CPAWS national XD Anne Levesque.

The site, which was created by DDB Canada’s online division, Tribal DDB, allows Canadians to share stories and media about respective wilderness experiences and learn more about Canadian wild spaces that are in need of protection.

‘More than a static site, the Big Wild is where Canada’s wilderness protection movement comes to life for supporters,’ says Cosmo Campbell, CD, Tribal DDB, Vancouver. ‘With all communications ultimately directing audiences to this hub, the social networking site plays a crucial role bringing the brand to life.’ Additional features will be added to the site throughout this year and next.

The ‘Goin’ Wild on the Streets’ guerrilla campaign kicked off yesterday and will continue for the next two weeks with various street-theatre events in high-traffic areas in the 11 Canadian cities.

Mountain Equipment Co-op is getting in on the action with an in-store viral program developed by DDB. With a small donation, customers can purchase green Big Wild shoelaces. Renowned Canadians including musicians Sam Roberts and K-OS are supporting the initiative by either wearing a green lace or adding their voice online.

Consumers were first introduced to the integrated marketing campaign in March via print ads appearing in Mountain Equipment Co-op’s spring catalogue. Campaign branding and design were done by Karacters Design Group, DDB Echology developed CSR strategies and guerrilla marketing and media relations were handled by DDB Public Relations.