Aviva’s Community Fund seeks ideas from Canadians

The insurance company's corporate responsibility arm has partnered with Canadian media in its search for winning community development ideas.

Aviva Canada launched a national contest this week to solicit the best ideas on improving Canadian communities, and is working with Canadian media and non-profit organizations to promote it.

The insurance co is dedicating $500,000 to communities who submit the best ideas for projects that will improve the places where they live. The campaign, developed by Toronto’s Idea Couture, centres on a dedicated website where ideas are submitted and voted on. The contest will have three rounds of idea submission, and at the end of each round the best 20 ideas will go on to the final round. A panel of judges will then determine what ideas are best and the funds will be allocated accordingly.

To get the word out, Aviva has a media buy, handled by Toronto’s Mindshare, for ‘billboard’ ads on CTV and has partnered with the Globe and Mail to promote the contest. They also have a partnership with non-profit organization Free the Children, which saw Aviva spokespeople get on stage to promote the Fund to audiences of 16,000 and 17,000 at the organization’s ‘We Day’ events in Vancouver (Sept 29) and Toronto (Oct.5). There is also a social media push on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, as submissions can include video as well and contestants are encouraged to promote their ideas to earn votes.

The media strategy was to meld Aviva’s desire to do a cause-based marketing campaign with a viral push, Sally Tuney, VP corporate affairs, Aviva Canada, tells MiC.

‘We really felt that we wanted a viral campaign. We wanted to try it out and we really wanted to have a grassroots corporate responsibility initiative. So we asked, what was the strongest way of rolling that out? And we’ve seen, around the world, when people are able to vote and share their voice – for example, the American Idol competition – they do. They step up and they vote.’

The competition soft-launched earlier this month and officially launched this week. It has garnered 260 ideas so far, and submissions will be accepted until Nov. 29 and the winner announced Jan. 25, 2010.