IPG Agencies Collaborate for Bank of America (RED) Campaign with U2

Hill Holliday and Octagon often work together on behalf of shared client Bank of America. This year, the agencies partnered to create a unique and impactful campaign that built awareness for their new partnership with (RED) the licensed brand that engages the private sector in raising awareness and funds to help eliminate HIV/AIDS in Africa.


Bank of America is in a unique position to use the power of its global platform to help people and communities address a wide range of societal challenges. The Bank knew it could make a critical difference in the fight against HIV/AIDS by partnering with (RED) and U2 and making a two-year, $10 million pledge. The Bank also knew it could rally people around the world to join the fight.


The partnership was announced at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and launched with a Super Bowl ad featuring U2 performing their new song, “Invisible.” The song was free to download on iTunes for 24 hours. The Bank donated $1 to (RED) for every download. A few days before the Super Bowl, a teaser was posted on YouTube. A Vine was tweeted. Paid social promotion backed both. On the Bank’s two digital billboards in Times Square, a clock counted down to the song download. The countdown was mirrored on (RED) and iTunes sites. To amplify this, 500 radio personalities did live reads on local stations nationwide. On Super Bowl Sunday, the ad reached over 100 million viewers and, surrounded by an innovative social media strategy, created an unprecedented level of awareness, participation and buzz. The song was downloaded over a million times in the first hour.


In just over 24 hours, 3,144,477 downloads of Invisible triggered a $3,144,477 donation from Bank of America – translating into over 7.8 million days of life-saving AIDS medication for pregnant mothers. There were 7 million YouTube views of the ad, 112,000 campaign mentions and 107,000 tweets — the majority of which originated from celebrities and influencers such as musicians, talk-show hosts and politicians.

A band, a bank and a cause that for 24 hours transformed an audience into an army.

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