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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

Endangered Species Act (ESA) 50th Anniversary Campaign #ESA50

Bronze Honor in Government & Politics

Entered in Social Good Campaign


The Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 is the most significant piece of endangered species legislation and is considered one of the world’s most important conservation laws. For all of 2023 the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is celebrating the 50th anniversary of this historic law. Our objective for the campaign is to celebrate the anniversary by increasing our audience’s knowledge of the ESA, as well as increase support for the ESA, the agency, and our partners. 

Strategy and Execution

Strategies are to create bi-weekly social media posts for all main USFWS social media accounts, developed a toolkit for partners to help celebrate with us, utilize the collaboration function on Instagram to create joint messaging with partners, develop special ESA 50th gifs and stickers for both internal and external users to enhance storytelling on various social media platforms. Engage in social listening to interact with and talk with social media users who are talking about the Endangered Species Act anniversary, develop special web stories and digital products for the ESA 50th for our website. The campaign outcome has been wildly successful with lots of positive engagement and reach. At the time of submission, we have collectively reached over 121 million users on Instagram, 800,000 users on Facebook, 749,000 X interactions, and over 613,000 LinkedIn engagements.


Our campaign implementation has been to use humour and entertainment to grab the viewing audience's attention. By using meme style graphics, trending topics and entertaining ESA facts, we’ve been able to grab the attention of social media users. By using design programs to create simple looking graphics and memes for the ESA 50th campaign we’ve been able to create some of our top performing Instagram and LinkedIn posts in those accounts' history. These designs were crafted to appeal and capture high engagement. By enticing the audience with a humorous caption or meme, we then were able to dive into the heavier topic of the Endangered Species Act. By providing just the right mix of humour and seriousness, according to our analytics we have successfully engaged over 800,000 users on Facebook, received a post reach of 121,000,000 on Instagram, received  749,000 impressions on X (Twitter) and 613,000 impressions on LinkedIn. Overall, our ESA 50th implementation has been successful and delivered us some of our most popular and engaging social posts in the history of our accounts. In addition to our social media posts, we also created a series of posters and GIFs to enhance our outreach for the campaign. The webpage for the ESA 50th posters was highly visited and the ESA 50th GIFs were a great way to help us engage with social media users who used the campaign hashtag #ESA50.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service


Entry Credits