2014 Winners & Shortlists



Case Film

Presentation Board

CategoryBest Use of Live Events, Stunts and or Celebrity Endorsement
Advertising Agency FP7/DXB Dubai, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

The Campaign

Brick-by-brick and nail-by-nail, over a million blue-collar workers build the dreams of UAE, while silently carrying the burden of their own dreams on their shoulders. SmartLife Foundation wanted to help them with their most important dream – that of a quality education for their children. We needed to create an idea that would be compelling and contagious. Being a non-profit organization, the budgets were negligible. Hence, the idea needed to be remarkable enough to get people talking about it and attractive enough to draw people to it, triggering participation and active engagement. An effective usage of earned media and PR were crucial for the idea to be successful. We created SAPNA (Dream) - a canvas that was built as a wall of dreams on a prominent street in Dubai during the famous Dubai Shopping Festival, where people could buy the very nails the workers hammer everyday, for 10 AED (~$2.7) each, and do a little labour on their part by hammering the nails into the wall. When complete, the wall showed a heartwarming image of a graduation hat being gifted to a child. A trending hashtag (#sapnadubai), the first crowd-sourced nail art piece for charity, unexpected TV, Print and Radio coverage, an earned (free) media value of over $400,000 and rising - all of these results have led to the SAPNA Wall's growing popularity. In just 9 days, all 17,793 nails were hammered in the wall helping educate 20 children of blue-collar workers through their schooling right through until graduation.

The Brief

We embarked on a truth hunt and visited the blue-collar workers' residential areas, and spent some time with them - talking to them about their lives, conducting English lectures and following them on their day at work. We discovered that even though some of the workers hammered in over 200,000 nails a month, their monthly salaries (as low as 200-300 USD) might never be enough to fulfill the dreams of giving their children a high quality education all the way up to graduation. Our idea needed to become a beacon of hope and support for their cause.


For an absolute $0 cost (production, location, media, volunteers - pro bono), the SAPNA wall became the first crowd-sourced nail art piece for charity, attracting over 55 different nationalities, popular Arab celebrities from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, popular local influencers from UAE and Dubai Shopping Festival entertainers. Everyone participated in doing a little labour themselves. #sapnadubai became a popular trending topic across social platforms and people's shared photographs which gave us over a 100,000 free social ads combined with the unexpected coverage across TV, Print and Radio, have generated an earned (free) media value of over $400,000 and rising. And in just 9 days, all 17,793 nails were bought, giving 20 blue-collar workers’ children a quality education all the way up to graduation; something their parents had only dreamt about. Because of this success, the SAPNA wall will travel across the region building more dreams, one nail at a time.


In the week prior to launch, we created a Facebook event to invite the people of UAE. We also shared the blue-collar workers' emotional stories via digital films to SmartLife's B2B partners. On launch day, we set up the SAPNA wall on a prominent street in Dubai, during the Dubai Shopping Festival - a festive time that attracts huge crowds. We created #sapnadubai to increase word of mouth. And shared the hashtag with people at the wall to tag along with the photographs they had taken that they would share on their social media profiles. The SAPNA wall continued to become more famous as we were unexpectedly featured on leading Radio (Virgin Radio, Radio Mirchi), Print (Khaleej Times' City Times) and TV (Dubai One) channels. As the wall was completed, the dream came to life, with all the nails forming the image of a child being gifted a graduation hat.

The Situation

There are over a million blue-collar workers in UAE, building the dreams of the country and its people, brick by brick, nail by nail, while silently holding their own dreams of giving their children a quality education, seeing them graduate, become doctors/engineers and hence, live a better life. But with monthly salaries as low as 200 to 300 USD, those dreams often remain unfulfilled. SmartLife Foundation (an NGO for UAE’s blue-collar workers) wanted to help.

The Strategy

We set out to create an immersive experience that was compelling enough for people in UAE to participate in and contribute to the cause. We wanted to give them a chance to feel a fraction of the workers' efforts and empathize with them. So, we created SAPNA (Dream) - a canvas with designated markers designed by Pointillist artists and installed it on a wall in a prominent area in Dubai, during the Dubai Shopping Festival. Our PR strategy was focused on EARNED MEDIA triggered through the SAPNA wall and our hashtag #sapnadubai. We invited people to buy a nail for a minimum of 10 AED (~$2.7) and hammer it onto our designated 17,793 markers, and give back one nail at a time. As the nails filled up the wall, they formed a heartwarming image of a child being gifted a graduation hat, bringing dreams to life.


Name Company Role
Tahaab Rais FP7/DXB Head Of Insights And Strategy
Paul Banham FP7/DXB Executive Creative Director
Josephine Younes FP7/DXB Associate Creative Director
Nayaab Rais FP7/DXB Associate Creative Director
Paul Banham/Josephine Younes/Nayaab Rais FP7/DXB Art Director
Paul Banham/Nayaab Rais/Tahaab Rais/Josephine Younes FP7/DXB Copywriter
Vicky Kriplani FP7/DXB Account Director
Sameer Islam FP7/DXB Strategic Planner
Asitha Hb FP7/DXB Pointillist Artist/Illustrator
Khaled Hamza FP7/DXB Creative Services Manager
Sreenivasan Kuniyil FP7/DXB Assistant Production Manager
Ashraf Muhammadunny/Aurangzaib Zafar FP7/DXB Motion Artist And Editor
Dolly Saidy/Mario Atallah/Karol Akl MINT MENA Agency Producer
Arun Kumar Krishnan MCN Regional It Director
Yasmin Ahmed General Manager Smartlife Foundation
Rex Prakash Secretary Smartlife Foundation
Sherif Ghanem UM Associate Director Of Strategy
Navid Hussain UM Media Operations Supervisor
Spiro Malak FP7/DXB Business Unit Director
UM Additional company
Eye Media Additional company
MINT MENA Additional company