NEW YORK – (March 27, 2015) Rokkan announced today that The Humane Society of the United States, the nation’s largest animal protection organization, has hired the creative and media agency to lead the organization’s first-ever national puppy mill awareness and education campaign. The first campaign work is expected to hit in May 2015.
Melanie Kahn, senior director for the “Stop Puppy Mills” Campaign of The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) said: “As an organization committed to improving animal welfare, it was important for us to work with a group of like-minded individuals, and we’ve found that in Rokkan. We’re looking forward to kicking off this campaign and raising awareness of the danger of supporting puppy mills.”
Most people who purchase pets online or at pet stores, instead of adopting them from a shelter or reputable breeder, don’t realize that those businesses are largely fronts for puppy mills, or large-scale commercial dog-breeding facilities in which the health of the dogs is disregarded in order to maintain a low overhead and maximize profits. Many people who are looking to bring pets into their families are simply not aware that they are perpetuating the system.
Rokkan’s campaign for The HSUS will combat puppy mills with an education-based approach that blends strategy, creative, paid media and other above and below-the-line activations. The campaign will live primarily on digital, acting as a foundation that will support eventual experiential and other offline initiatives as this comes to life.
Made possible by a generous grant from Maddie’s Fund, this will be the first time The HSUS will be able to widely expose the true consequences associated with inadvertently supporting puppy mills with a paid advertising campaign of this nature. As the campaign components roll out and engage the public, the end-goal will be to change behavior and create the next big movement in how people think about their pets.
“It’s a rare opportunity to find a project that you feel passionate about, and it’s for a great cause. My own dog, May, was rescued from a puppy mill, so this really hits close to home for me,” said Charles Bae, CCO of Rokkan. “We’re taking this project personally, so Rokkan will be creating it end-to-end. With the rise of YouTube pet stars and the Internet animal craze, the timing couldn’t be more perfect to talk about the real issues behind the ‘commerce of cuteness’ in a meaningful and unexpected way.”
The announcement of this new partnership between The Humane Society and Rokkan follows a year of immense growth for the agency, which brought in more than 15 new clients in 2014, as well as the launch of its paid media arm earlier in 2014, headed by Lindsay Williams, VP of Media and Analytics. The HSUS joins a roster of other world-class client brands supported by Rokkan, including American Express, JetBlue Airways, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Hyatt Hotels, Samsung, Mikimoto Pearls, and WellPoint, Inc., among others.
About The Humane Society of the United States
The Humane Society of the United States is the nation’s largest animal protection organization, rated most effective by our peers. For 60 years, we have celebrated the protection of all animals and confronted all forms of cruelty. We are the nation’s largest provider of hands-on services for animals, caring for more than 100,000 animals each year, and we prevent cruelty to millions more through our advocacy campaigns. Read more about our 60 years of transformational change for animals and people, and visit us online at humanesociety.org.
Rokkan is a modern agency, born from digital. Its purpose: to serve as client partner for brands on the cusp of change. Borrowing its name from the Japanese word for “the sixth sense,” Rokkan brings intuition to research and strategy to help brands navigate storytelling, social engagement, customer experience and e-commerce. Founded in 2000, Rokkan has grown from a three-person startup into a heavily awarded member of the Publicis Groupe, housing some of the most innovative talent in the industry. With offices in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, Rokkan leverages a unique and nimble approach, blending strategy, storytelling, and technology. For more information visit www.rokkan.com, or follow us at @Rokkan, on FB and Instagram.