Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence: Teddy Gun

August 05, 2017Filed under Direct Marketing, Design and Public Interest, NGO

Teddy bear manufacturers are required to follow incredibly strict safety regulations—unless, of course, the teddy bear is a gun. Introducing Teddy Gun. Created to shine a light on the nonsensical lack of government oversight on the gun industry, Teddy Gun became a tragic, ironic, powerful symbol of the disproportionate lack of regulation that contributes to the senseless deaths of over 30,000 people per year. We used Teddy Gun to ignite a groundswell of outrage and political pressure for common sense gun laws.

At the center of the campaign is Teddy Gun, an ironic symbol for the lack of common sense gun regulation. But more than a symbol, Teddy Gun is also an actual product. Its design needed to be provocative, memorable and simple enough to replicate across various channels.Our starting point was a teddy bear. In addition to looking like a teddy bear, Teddy Gun needed to retain the functionality of a gun. We worked with a 3D designer and a gun manufacturer to bring our vision to life. We considered every aspect of the Teddy Gun design—from the way someone would hold it, to where the trigger needed to go, to the rubber material required for the grip, to the perfect size, so the gun apparatus would seamlessly blend into the body of the teddy bear.

Teddy Gun did what all the headlines and news coverage on the gun violence epidemic couldn’t: It stopped people in their tracks, moved them, and motivated them to take action—to put pressure on Congress for more common sense gun laws. With over 135 million earned impressions following the Teddy Gun introduction video, and a total earned media value of $2.62MM, ICHV achieved new levels of awareness and engagement. Due to this success, the Teddy Gun exhibit is touring and impacting communities beyond the launch. And now an ICHV-supported bill is gaining unprecedented momentum in the state legislature.

Every year the public is bombarded with thousands of stories about gun violence, and the debate about gun regulations, on their news streams. With so many stories, people had become numb, making it difficult for organizations like ICHV to make a significant impact. We needed a way to wake people up and pay attention. The striking visual of the Teddy Gun, compared to a teddy bear, immediately drew people in to find out more.

The US government has long established a history of protecting its citizens from inherently, and even not inherently, dangerous products by instituting health and safety standards. Without this oversight, we all would be far more susceptible to injury and death. The majority of US citizens believe the gun industry faces high-level government oversight. However, even though guns are the most inherently dangerous consumer product, the manufacture of guns is not regulated in any significant way. By contrast, children’s teddy bears harm only a fraction of the number of people guns harm, but are required to meet far more health and safety standards. The Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence (ICHV) is a nonprofit organization that focuses on handgun violence prevention and advocates for common sense gun laws at both state and federal government levels.

Advertising Agency:Fcb Chicago, USA
Chief Creative Officer:Liz Taylor
Svp:Max Geraldo, John Bleeden
Executive Creative Director:Max Geraldo
Creative Director:Bruno Mazzotti, Dean Paradise, Gustavo Dorietto
Vp:Gustavo Dorietto
Executive Creative Producer:John Bleeden
Executive Prodcuer:Lindsay Tyler
Content Integration:Lindsay Tyler
Senior Manager Digital Development:Michael Chesta
Lead Developer:John Skibicki
Senior Developer:Morgan Bates
Tech Lead:Erik Christianson
Senior Retoucher:Greg Olsen
3d Artist:Eduardo Borges
Social Manager:Mike Norgard
Associate Business Analyst:Derek Tucker
Senior Project Manager:Mamo Arima
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