A “viral” campaign, organised by the Belgian radio station Studio Brussels and the Red Cross, to raise money for drinking water projects, has won a prestigious “Titanium Lion” award at the Cannes Lions 2008 International Advertising Festival. The campaign was in support of the annual charity event ‘Music for Life‘ which is part of the “Serious Request” project initiated by the Dutch radio station 3FM. Its December 2007 “The world cries out for water” campaign focused on raising awareness and money for Red Cross development projects.
The “viral” campaign involved a black boy who showed up on Flanders’ best watched station ‘één’ during three days, always in prime time. He quickly drank the host’s glass of water and then ran off. The most frequently asked question during these days was: ‘have you seen the thirsty black boy?’ The whole thing started to lead a life of its own on the internet and in other media. After claiming the campaign, the Belgian organisers raised 3.3 million euros in 6 days time. The Dutch radio station 3FM raised 5.2 million euros and Swiss Radio Station Couleur 3 raised 150,000 euros.