Arctic Awareness Effort for WWF Russia Bears Fruit

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Interactive polar bear game draws more than six million social media impressions in the first three
Interactive polar bear game draws more than six million social media impressions in the first three

The Objective: To raise public consciousness about climate change, poaching, and pollution in the Arctic region, the Russian arm of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) called on BBDO Moscow to help launch an online project that would both spark discussion and bring in donations. It's currently being predicted that of the 25,000 polar bears in the Arctic, only one third will still be alive by 2050.

The Solution: BBDO Moscow created an interactive online game (accessible at featuring a virtual depiction of the polar bear's plight: a pixelized version of a shrinking ice floe packed with milling bears. By clicking on a square of blue sea surrounding the floe, a user can help turn it to ice, thus expanding the bears' natural habitat. To ensure amplified sharing, participants first have to log in via a social network, either Facebook, Twitter, or VK, a Facebook-like social variant popular in Russia. To add a virtual bear, users must make a financial contribution, which will go to support coastal monitoring, anti-poaching activities, and other environmental projects in the Arctic region.

The Creative: By clicking on a bear or an ice square, visitors can see the name and profile of the person who donated it.

The Results: Within three months of the website's launch in February, 72% of visitors clicked the “Why is it important?” button to learn more about the issue. As of May the project has generated more than six million impressions throughout Russian social media networks. BBDO estimates that the ongoing campaign had already been shared with half of all Russian Facebook users.

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