Perhaps one of the most puzzling ironies of life is the fact that advertising agencies tend to suffer from a poor public image.
Although they make their careers polishing the way that consumers see a brand, they are not always themselves viewed with the same rosy tint.
The North American economic crisis of late 2008 compelled two advertising professionals to reassess not only the direction of their careers, but the ways in which advertising is involved with public life.
A Force For Social Good
Reid Stone and Shaun Walker met while helping to rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and developed a shared vision of how an advertisement agency could be a force for social good.
They decided to start from the ground up and created an agency with a conscience that strove to be not the richest, but the most creative, which would promote ideals and positive change as much as their clients' products and public image.
They built HEROfarm upon this foundation.
Our goal is to help evolve advertising into something people don't run from, but applaud.
Free of Charge
HEROfarm makes a positive difference in the communities it serves by working on one ad campaign per year completely pro bono, giving organizations and initiatives doing charitable work top-shelf advertising.
One such campaign was to revamp the brand of the only full-time reading service for the blind and print-handicapped on the FM dial in the United States -- WRBH 88.3 FM in New Orleans.
HEROfarm's heroes also volunteer their time on many different marketing boards, such as the American Cancer Society of New Orleans, March of Dimes, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Boy Scouts of America of Southern Louisiana.
They have done work with the New Orleans Mission and Food Allergy Research and Education, and they also serve on Tulane University's Public Board of Advisors in the Media Arts/Journalism Department for Continuing Studies.
A Purposeful Approach
HEROfarm's approach to marketing and branding imbues their work with a purpose and a passion that would be sadly out of place in many corporate offices. Their drive to promote endeavors that make their community a better place gives them a reason to love not only what they do, but why they do it.
As their website says, "our goal is to help evolve advertising into something people don't run from, but applaud."
They are an inspiring example of outside-the-box thinking, showing that there are many different ways that companies can work to improve the world in which they work.
We need so much more of exactly this kind of fresh approach to philanthropic activity in the 21st century.
Hopefully, HEROfarm's bold example will be taken up by many others in their industry. The axiom that they use to define their work is "do great work for good people," and there really isn't a better way to do business.
Published by:Andy Hill