Depaul Trust Case study IHOBO 1.1 by Publicis London

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Industry Charities, Foundations, Volunteers
Media Case study
Market United Kingdom
Agency Publicis London
Executive Creative Director Adam Kean, Tom Ewart
Art Director Robert Amstell
Copywriter Matthew Lancod
Producer Sharon Joyce, Colin Hickson
Released April 2011

Credits & Description

Category: Titanium and Integrated
Advertiser: DEPAUL UK
Date of First Appearance: Apr 30 2011
Entry URL:
Art Director: Robert Amstell (Publicis London)
Copywriter: Matthew Lancod (Publicis London)
Executive Creative Director: Tom Ewart (Publicis London)
Executive Creative Director: Adam Kean (Publicis London)
Managing Director: Phil Mundy (twentysix digital)
App Developer: Scott Walsh (twentysix digital)
Producer: Sharon Joyce (Publicis London)
Producer: Colin Hickson (Publicis London)
Production Assistant: Sam Holmes (Publicis London)
Director (Live Action): Ned Miles (Mr & Mrs Smith)
Programmer (Stage 1): Simon Whitty (Whileloop)
Animator: Matthew Osbourne (The Mill)
Media placement: IPhone App - Apple App Store - 30 April 2011

Describe the campaign/entry
Depaul UK, a small charity that helps young homeless people, shot to fame in 2010 with the launch of iHobo – the iPhone app that challenges users to look after a virtual homeless person on their phone for 3 days. In 2011 a new and updated version of iHobo was launched in order to help Depaul UK refresh its ageing donor database. This new generation app represents an evolution of the original iHobo in response to two things: the need to recruit even more new supporters and build the database to ensure long-term donations, and technological developments that have enabled us to deliver a more engaging and connected experience.

Describe how the campaign/entry was launched across each channel in the order of implementation
Version 1 demonstrated the power of delivering an engaging experience that people wanted to talk about and pass on. v 1.1 includes some significant technological developments that ensure even more engagement, talkability, and facilitate sharing:
• The League of Care enabled users to understand how well they are looking after the homeless person and compete against friends and other user. Facebook Connect meant that status updates sent directly from the app appeared in real time on the user’s wall, thereby making a very personal experience public.
• New tasks and challenges for users - such as helping the homeless person find accommodation for the night which not only made for a more engaging experience but also increased the ability of the app to gather e-mail addresses from users thereby helping to grow the Depaul UK database more quickly than ever before.
• A new way of talking to people using iHobo - we made the whole experience feel more personal by getting the virtual homeless person address the user by name at all times.
• New visual elements - such as the frosted screen in order to make the experience of being homeless feel more real.
• New messaging about youth homelessness – users could collect objects revealing hidden truths about the issue.

Give some idea of how successful this campaign/entry was with both client and consumer
The updated app was launched in April 2011 and so at the moment we are not able to make a full assessment of the effectiveness of the campaign. V 1 was downloaded 600,000 times in the first year, and recruited 1,200 new database contacts. V 1.1 has only been available for one month yet has already almost equalled that figure with over 1,000 people offering their contact details and joining the Depaul UK database, which is the long-term goal of this campaign, suggesting that people are more engaged and more committed than those who downloaded the original.