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From the 3rd Annual Shorty Social Good Awards

VH1 Hip Hop Squares + Truth

Entered in Public Health


Big Tobacco went to court for racketeering in 2006. After 10 years of dragging out the legal proceedings and ultimately their punishment, they are finally being forced to come clean by issuing court-mandated corrective statements to the public.

VH1 + truth partnered to utilize VH1 programming and talent to expose Big Tobacco's lies and force them to wear their scarlet letter in places where young people will see them.

Strategy and Execution

Tapping into one of VH1's highly-rated franchises, Hip Hop Squares (HHS) and leveraging distinguishable social talent created a 360 convergent program which leveraged the light-hearted humor of the show to help shed light on Big Tobacco's lies.

The program was rooted in a :45 on-air vignette which ran 23 times as lead up to a HHS episode premiere. The creative features Deray Davis backstage at HHS where he's approached by his friends/social talent Simone + Klarity who are dying to be contestants on the show. They confront Deray about why he still hasn't had them on the show. Deray then comes up with lie after hilarious lie as to why they can't be on the show, until turning straight to camera to reveal the biggest lies of all – from Big Tobacco.

To further extend truth's presence on VH1 across all screens, we amplified this content across VH1's digital and social platforms to spread the message of Big Tobacco's lies to our social audience, where Big Tobacco's statements may be flying under the radar.

We created an editorial blog post (with fixed media + co-brands) which highlighted GIFs pulled from the vignette and a :60 digital extended video which featured even more of Deray's comedic lies. The digital extended video included pre-roll + slate and was also housed with a digital playlist on with road blocked media.

Robust social promotion was provided from VH1's social platforms (13x total social posts shared to VH1's over 8.7M combined followers across FB, IG, Twitter and YouTube) including support from Simone + Klarity's massive social footprint (over 2MM followers combined). We even received MORE social love as Deray re-tweeted 2x of VH1's posts to his over 850k Twitter followers and Klarity who re-posted the truth video to his IG page.


The campaign surpassed the impressions guarantee, over-delivering by +35%.


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