THE SAVIOUR

ClientTHE NORWEGIAN LABOUR INSPECTION AUTHORITY
Category B03. Crisis Communication & Issue Management
TitleTHE SAVIOUR
Product/ServicePREVENTING SEXUAL HARASSMENT WITHIN THE HOSPITALITY AND NIGHTLIFE INUDSTRY
Entrant GEELMUYDEN KIESE Oslo, NORWAY
Idea Creation GEELMUYDEN KIESE Oslo, NORWAY
PR GEELMUYDEN KIESE Oslo, NORWAY
Production GEELMUYDEN KIESE Oslo, NORWAY
Production 2 STIAN BROCH Fornebu, NORWAY
Credits
Name Company Position
Ole Henrik Stubberud Geelmuyden Kiese Sr Creative
Trygve A. Tønnessen Geelmuyden Kiese Sr Creative
Sarah Willoch Geelmuyden Kiese Art Director
Robin Willis Borgen Geelmuyden Kiese Sr Designer
Celine Gran Geelmuyden Kiese Project Manager
Geir Ove Harnes Geelmuyden Kiese Senior Advisor/Partner
Lena Ryde Nord Geelmuyden Kiese Advisor
Stian Broch Stian Broch Photographer
Jesper Høst Jesper Høst Bartender
Anne Maurseth Anne Maurseth Bartender

Why is this work relevant for PR?

«The Saviour» is a drink designed to address sexual harassment within the hospitality and nightlife industry. The drink itself is nothing more than a fancy glass of water, but it’s served with a special message. By serving «The Saviour», bars and restaurants gave their guests a signal of zero-tolerance for sexual harassment. At the same time, it provided management and staff the opportunity to talk about the issue. Media coverage of the initiative reached more than half of Norway’s population, and since its launch more than 100 bars and restaurants have introduced «The Saviour» on their menus.

Background

As the last year has shown us, sexual harassment is all around us. According to statistics, those working in hospitality and the nightlife industry are particularly exposed. In fact, more than 20 percent of those working here have experienced sexual harassment at least once within the last six months. Fearing that bad publicity and negative buzz could affect both recruitment and the reputation of the industry, The Norwegian Labour Inspection Authority wanted to be proactive and signal to everyone that the issue were top of their agenda. However: Bars, restaurants and nightclubs found it difficult to address the topic of sexual harassment, both internally and especially towards guests. After all, they don’t want anything to ruin the party. What could we bring to the table that would make both clientele and staff aware of the problem, but in a way that doesn't ruin the good mood they're so dependent on?

Describe the creative idea

The client didn't have a lot of money to promote this initiative. Also, the target audience was so fragmented, and with young people being really cautious to public service announcements, we had to be clever in how we approached this. However, we suddenly realized that there was one thing that both guests and those working in this industry couldn't help but notice. Why not give them exactly what they were after? A drink. And that's just what we did, by creating "The Saviour": The drink that solves a problem. Or, it wasn't exactly a drink. In fact, it was nothing more than a fancy glass of water. What was special about it, as with all famous drinks and cocktails, was the story behind it and the message served on its coaster: «Welcome. We wish all guests and employees a fantastic night. Together against sexual harassment.»

Describe the strategy

Together with the client group we decided to keep all the material unbranded, since we wanted bars and restaurants to really commit to this and make the "The Saviour" their own. And after all, who was behind the initiative wasn't important, the cause itself was. However, how the drink would serve a role as a «Trojan horse» was the ultimate key to success. Because, through serving "The Saviour", those working in the industry was bound to be exposed to it. And thereby it would provide management and staff at the bars and restaurants the necessary opportunity to talk about sexual harassment at their respective workplaces: What sexual harassment is, what's not acceptable at work, and what to do if or when it occurs.

Describe the execution

To really underline the importance and secure interest around "The Saviour", we allied ourselves with two of the most recognized bartenders and one of the best food & drink-photographers in Norway. Together with them we developed six different theme-based "The Saviours" and presented them as the most luxurious cocktails. (An element that really stood out and got recognition among the audience, since alcohol-advertising is illegal in Norway.) We then teamed up with six of the most popular bars and clubs in Oslo and launched "The Saviour" on the first of the busy festive season-weekends, catching the interest of both clientele, the industry and the media. Through serving "The Saviour", bars, restaurants and clubs could give their guests a signal of their zero-tolerance for sexual harassment while making it a likeable and positive experience.

List the results

After the launch where we teamed up with six nightclubs, more than 100 new bars, restaurants and clubs have since introduced "The Saviour" on their menus, ordering coasters and brochures to hand out to guests and workers respectively. There has also been interest from authorities in the other Nordic countries to replicate the initiative in their respective markets. Within just a few weeks after the launch the media coverage of the initiative reached over 3 million – more than half of Norway's population. And rather than the focus being on the negative aspects, the industry was portrayed as proactive and crafty - eager to get rid of sexual harassment. Among the most notable clippings were long segments on the evening news of the two largest TV-channels, NRK and TV2, and in Dagbladet, the second-largest tabloid newspaper. Several important industry-media covered "The Saviour" as well, all applauding the initiative and highlighting its importance.