2012 Nonprofit PR Awards: Digital PR/Marketing

Winner: Airlines for America and APCO Worldwide – Stop Air Tax Now Campaign

During the fall of 2011, the White House introduced various proposals that would have increased taxes on the airlines and their passengers by $36 billion over the next 10 years. In response, Airlines for America launched a campaign to communicate the issue to its target audiences of Hill staff, airline employees and travelers. A Web site, StopAirTaxNow.com, was launched to educate the public about the impact of the proposed tax, as well as air sickness bags that directly made the point (pictured). From the site, supporters could e-mail the White House and their representatives, or send them tweets. Nearly 21,000 citizens sent more than 150,000 letters to the White House and Congress. On Nov. 21, 2011, the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction ultimately ruled that new taxes on airlines and their passengers were not to be considered. —BM

Honorable Mentions:

Association of America Railroads and SKDKnickerbocker – Digital Marketing in the Crowded D.C. Market: The effort to engage elected officials and policy experts included the weekly release of railroad data for economists and lighter, economy-focused fare like a weekly rail quiz as part of a Facebook campaign.

BC Association of Optometrists and Edelman – BC Doctors of Optometry: Doctors from British Columbia delivered engaging content online, using video and Facebook, to provide patients better access to eye health experts.

The Foundation for Eye Health Awareness and Weber Shandwick– Think About Your Eyes Thursdays with IWearYourShirt.com: A Facebook photo contest and corresponding blogger outreach helped the FEHA encourage consumers to protect their eyes from harmful UV rays.