Nextdoor spreads some kindness in outdoor campaign for Fred Victor

Who: Nextdoor, with Dive Networks/Big Digital and Outfront Media, for Fred Victor.

What: “The Kindness Billboard,” part of an outdoor campaign that includes real-time billboards encouraging people to donate to Fred Victor in Toronto.

When & Where: The campaign launched for Giving Tuesday (Nov. 29) with an activation in Toronto’s Yonge-Dundas Square, but will roll out to other billboards around the city this week. Nextdoor is also bringing the campaign to life on its platform, which is in 20% of Toronto homes.

Why (Fred Victor): Fred Victor exists to help those experiencing homelessness. ”Our holiday campaign is all about our virtual gift catalogue where you can’t buy anything for yourself but you can buy the most needed items for people living in poverty and experiencing homelessness,” said Inta Dukule, Fred Victor’s senior manager for marketing and brand. “Donations that we receive ensure that we can help over 3,000 people daily who are looking for escape from the cold, hot meals and groceries, warm clothing, a place to sleep, mental health support, employment and training, and even a permanent and affordable housing.

Why (Nextdoor): The social media platform, which focuses on neighbourhoods, has put kindness at the centre of its brand for a few years now—even choosing KIND as its ticker symbol when it went public last year.

“It’s what we are all about, it’s our purpose as a company,” said Christopher Doyle, Nextdoor’s managing director in Canada. Kindness is a guiding mantra on the platform, but they also want to take that conversation into the real world.

“We’ve been talking a lot about how can we connect in real life to people, and it’s been hard through the pandemic,” he said. “We want to really shine a spotlight on those needs in our community and connecting people in real life.”

In this case the kindness is helping Fred Victor, by working with Big Digital/Dive and Outfront to help spread its fundraising message.

How: The campaign sees Fred Victor ads running on both Outfront’s digital billboards and Big Digital’s mobile billboards—the latter is what Nextdoor is calling its “kindness billboards.” Along with the QR-enabled calls to donate to shop at Fred Victor (ie. donate items like socks sweaters, boots and warm meals), Dive Networks streamed in thank you messages to those who donate in real time, as well as actual posts from Nextdoor related to the campaign.

The support from Nextdoor, Big Digital, Dive and Outfront helped Fred Victor “raise awareness and amplify our campaign in a capacity that otherwise wouldn’t be possible for our charity,” said Dukule.

“The whole purpose behind the kindness billboards is to drive awareness of the goodness that’s happening in our world, to encourage people to be kind and give back,” said Doyle. “We really want to shine a spotlight on kindness and make it visible off the platform as well, and I’m hopeful we’re going to do more of these.”

While the key message to passersby is to donate to Fred Victor, the Nextdoor logo appears on the Kindness Billboards below the screen, and there are slides with Fred Victor thanking Nextdoor and Big Digital and Dive for their support.

And we quote: “With this partnership we are reaching new communities and ultimately new donors who are very crucial in order to meet our fundraising goals and ensure that Fred Victor is there for people who need it most,” said Dukule. “Yesterday when we launched our campaign, we saw an incredible spike in new donors.”

David Brown