By Red Thinking
Empathy is emotional jet fuel, and here at Red Thinking, we always lead with heart. So, when The National Crime Prevention Council came calling in 2022 wanting help with their “Go For Real – Say No To Dupes” campaign, the first thing we said was, “Great! Is McGruff involved?”
As a huge part of our collective Red Thinking childhoods, McGruff leaned into empathy – albeit with more biting – to keep kids safe. We were THRILLED to work on their online brand enhancement and help teens and tweens shift their buying habits away from dangerous dupe products to genuine goods.
From this first initiative, the ideas kept rolling, and we dove into one of the most powerful, inspiring, and emotional campaigns we’ve ever been part of: The Lives Project: A Fentanyl Digital Remembrance Quilt.
Red Thinking was asked to go-digital with an idea inspired by the AIDS Memorial Quilt. The idea itself came from Paul DelPonte, Executive Director NCPC, on behalf of victims of the fentanyl epidemic and their families. The LivesProject.org is a Fentanyl Digital Remembrance Quilt that honors the lives lost to accidental overdoses while providing overall awareness, education, and easy ways to support, donate or get involved to end this crisis.
Specifically, Red Thinking designed the brand concept as a whole and launched a microsite ahead of the Fentanyl launch ahead of the National Fentanyl Summit in October 2022. Actress Ava Michelle – who lost her brother Devon to fentanyl – and McGruff the Crime Dog® unveiled the digital fentanyl memorial quilt and set the tone for the meeting, as three key government agencies came together with community leaders and other advocates to find solutions to address this U.S. public health crisis.
NCPC’s goal for this project is to help put an end to this crisis through education and a call for donations; Red Thinking built upon this goal by creating a digital memory book experience that tapped into the memories of those that have been lost. Using photos and messages from the victim’s families, as well as large type, subtle motion and a gentle palette, Red Thinking created an inviting, impactful place for the different audiences visiting this site while also ensuring they are able find what they were looking for, easily.
It’s worth noting the continuous scroll is intentional – we needed visitors to see the impact this epidemic is having on our nation, and quickly. Visitors should leave filled with a sense of hopeful urgency that puts in perspective the precious fragility of our one life – and be inspired to do their part to help. Red Thinking believes we all have the capacity to tap into this part of ourselves – it’s what we mean when we say “lead with heart.”
Which, in this case, begins with the call to simply remember.
You can learn more about our approach to this project and how we can help you by reading our latest blog: “When Talking Crime Prevention, Compassion Matters.”
Red Thinking is a Capitol Communicator sponsor.