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Vodafone wins Warc Innovation Prize 2016

News, 12 May 2016

GLOBAL: A campaign by Y&R Team Red Istanbul for Vodafone Turkey which addressed the issue of domestic violence has won the Grand Prix in the 2016 Warc Prize for Innovation, that was awarded at an event in London last night.

With Between Us, the phone company strengthened the brand's position as innovative and reliable by creating a protective smartphone app – the Vodafone Red Alarm – which enables women to call for help without being noticed, in the moment of violence.

Almost one quarter of women in Turkey with smartphones have downloaded the app, which has been used more than 100,000 times.

This campaign was described by judges as clever, powerful and true innovation. They were impressed by what the brand achieved in tackling a social issue, but it wasn't simply the emotive subject matter that made it the top choice. From a purely marketing perspective the campaign impressed in all aspects of its strategy and execution.

In addition to the $5,000 Grand Prix, five Special Awards, each worth $1,000, were made and a total of five golds, five silvers and two bronzes were awarded. Full detail of the winners are available on the Prize website.

Volvo picked up two Special Awards – for Category Innovation and for Co-Created Innovation – for Lifepaint, a UK campaign by Grey London that saw the car brand partner with a paint company to create an innovative reflective paint to provide safety to cyclists, and to make safety – and by extension Volvo – exciting again.

The Channel Innovation Award went to The American Red Cross, for which BBDO New York created Hope.ly, a bespoke link-shortening tool to promote the organisation organically through social media use.

Australian surf brand Rip Curl won the Product or Service Innovation Award, with a world-first waterproof GPS and surfing app designed by VML Australia that successfully connected with an existing community, elevated the brand, and evolved the category from a marketing perspective.

Finally, the Not for Profit Innovation Award was taken by Project Akshar, developed by FP7/DXB for SmartLife, an NGO operating in the United Arab Emirates, to provide accessible English training for hard-to-reach, time-poor labourers in Dubai.

Data sourced from Warc