When Covid-19 rapidly spread across Canada all but essential services remained operational. Lockdown meant most people were confined to their homes which was an unprecedented change in how our society functioned. Daily travel, commuting, and transportation grinded to a halt. But while millions of Canadians were stuck at home, many people stayed behind the wheel every day, driving to hospitals and pharmacies, delivering food and medication, supplying equipment, and providing services to essential businesses. Many brands responded with advertising statements of their support, but Yokohama Tire wanted to find a way to actually act by providing real, tangible help.
Rather than continuing the Spring advertising plan, Yokohama redirected all marketing spend into a completely organic, socially-led initiative developed by We Are Social, that celebrated frontline workers who risked it all to keep Canadians safe. We launched with an uplighting video that was produced through We Are Social Studios with footage safely shot at home by our network of Yokohama ambassadors. The creative challenged the Yokohama community to nominate heros who were still on the road, driving long distances to help support their communities - from doctors and nurses, medical suppliers, food delivery drivers, and couriers. Throughout the entire pandemic the brand delivered on their commitment by awarding a new set of spring tires every week to essential workers in communities across the country.
This activation was the first of its kind for the brand so benchmarking metrics was not an easy exercise. But to our delight, we experienced hundreds of heartwarming submissions from communities within every single province. Yokohama Canada earned over half a million brand impressions across the 10-week timeframe, with no paid media or traditional earned support whatsoever. We even had many new driving enthusiasts introduce themselves and raise their hand to join our Yokohama social ambassador group, which we leaned on heavily to spread our message and encourage participation. Most of all, We Are Social and Yokohama are proud of how our brand went beyond just communications, and providing tangible help during a time of crisis, in a way that only a tire brand could.