Liquid, fragmentary, and with no brand signature, #AlwaysBarcelona gradually builds on Barcelona’s reputation as all eyes turn towards the city during key events. So far, this social reputation campaign has reached more than 31 million people in over 80 different countries. For this second episode, we highlight the many faces of the city’s creative talent, the individuals that give intangible value to the city. Barcelona is not just a city. It is a curator and a stage on which people can grow and thrive.
A city brand is not spread through companies or institutions, but through the expertise of its citizens, driven above all by creativity and music, languages without boundaries.
Since it was announced by the Mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, #AlwaysBarcelona has gained recognition across key national media. With an innovative approach to communication, it aims to break away from the overexposed perception of Barcelona, instead promoting an authentic experience based on individual stories coming together as a whole. Rather than being too profound in terms of messaging, the movement is light, sustainable, and designed to develop a positive feeling for the city amongst the international community.
“Beyond the limits of the city, Barcelona is a brand that can be envisioned from many different angles. So why not be represented by the talented designers it supports. They are Barcelona.”
Rafa Martínez, COO, Partner & Brand Strategist, Folch
The first stage, #ShareLikeFollowBCN, which coincided with Mobile World Congress 2018, embraced the city’s vibrant culture, plurality and openness by portraying everyday life on the city streets. This next stage is all about people, about talent, and is divided into two separate strands of activity. The second episode showcases Barcelona’s rich ecosystem where culture nurtures creativity, designed to appeal to international entrepreneurs. To do so, we launched the campaign during Barcelona Design Week, an event which attracts entrepreneurs and companies in search of good design, innovation and creativity. The third episode #PlayActDanceBCN is aimed at people who are driven by cultural creativity, music and technology in a thriving city. It kicks off during Sónar and exposes the cultural and prolific environment of Barcelona as a hotspot for international musicians and artists. You can read more about this case here.
#ThinkDesignCreateBCN pays tribute to Barcelona’s designers, artists, directors, illustrators, and architects, bringing value to the creative scene on an international stage and promoting Barcelona as a capital of design and innovation. With the support of FAD and BCD, and promoted by the Ajuntament de Barcelona, we invited a group of 27 talents to participate in the campaign. With a profile shooting and description of their profession, the movement sheds light on the context in which every talent contributes to the city as an inspirational and profitable place for new business.
“It is a mistake to understand the city as a container. A city is the result of its content. And its content is diverse, imperfect, talented, multidisciplinary, boring, fun, etc.”
Albert Folch, Creative Director & Founder
The greatest challenge was working with and trying to organise a schedule for the other 27 busy and influential people, particularly on a tight budget and with an even tighter time frame. Flexibility was the key, as well as finding a strategic work flow that ensured everything ran smoothly for everyone involved. We chose fashion and advertising photographer Bèla Adler for the shooting because with her own studio based in Poble Nou, the heart of Barcelona’s creative scene, she represents another talent contributing to the industry’s ever-growing success.
The movement was purely digital, initially launching via display advertising on press sites, followed by a comprehensive social media activation campaign. In the course of 13 days, the same user would be able to visualize a slightly different version of the same ads on their Instagram feed and stories, via Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn, as well as various press sites. In order to generate quality traffic segmentation, we carefully selected six audience segments, including entrepreneurs, managers, professionals in the fields of graphic, industrial, fashion, interior and architectural design, talents and a more general audience.
“Activation is about delivering the right message at the right moment and context, giving meaning and relevance to the message we want to get out. With a number of design orientated events across the city, we seized the opportunity to get our message across.”
Angelina de Lucas, Paid Media Strategist at Folch
Using geographical targeting we reached out to people present in specific areas, such as the industrial quarter of Poble Nou and the Museu Del Disseny, sharing ads for desktop and phone about Barcelona’s many creatives. With the design industry making up 12% of all employment and with a stream of visitors arriving for design related events, people would likely be receptive to ads highlighting Barcelona’s a thriving design industry. A curated selection of ambassadors and institutions in collaboration with FAD and BCD were also asked to spread the campaign via their own channels using the hashtag #ThinkDesignCreateBCN.
The tone of voice used for all communication was very important. We wanted to make the campaign easy to identify and to transmit a real, human feeling. The voice of the campaign was going to be heard mainly through mobile phone and in a mobile environment by people on the move or with little time to waste. On our mobiles, we don’t write or talk, we do something called fingered speech, a concept established by John McWhorter, a linguistics professor at Columbia University.
“We needed to adapt our voices to the format and the audience we were talking to. To create empathy and make sure our message gets through. So what we did was apply the mobile-first commandment, writing the copy directly in the iPhone Notes app so it would be built in a native environment, emojis and all, in the same way in which the assets would be spread.“
Vincenzo Angileri, Narrative Director at Folch
Each asset links to the campaign website where visitors can see a selection of facts about Barcelona, it’s thriving community of creative talent and numerous educational opportunities. We designed a widescreen horizontal layout giving maximum impact to the talent profiles and audiovisual elements. It’s easy to navigate through a series of facts about Barcelona’s creative industry, which take centre screen displayed in the bold Druk typeface and, at strategic points, infographics further maximize and explain the data. The website is transversal, easily navigable between the three Always Barcelona campaigns, and the colour scheme is consistent throughout. An innovative feature allows you to essentially ‘chat’ to your desktop, which provides questions and answers to identify what you are specifically looking for.