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Anti-Violence Ads Pop Up in Specific Helsinki Neighborhoods Within Hours of 911 Calls There


If domestic violence seems like an abstract phenomenon, this TBWA campaign from Finland will remind people that it's happening right on their doorstep.

TBWA launched an outdoor campaign for the Helsinki Police over the Christmas holidays that had a hyperlocal, reactive element to it. When a domestic violence call into 911 (which is actually 112 in Helsinki), the agency—with help from outdoor company JCDecaux—immediately put up anti-violence PSA posters on the 15 outdoor placements nearest to the home that made the call.

The posters stayed up for 48 hours before being swiftly removed again.

"There have been domestic violence calls from this area within the past 48 hours," reads copy on the posters. "If you experience, witness or suspect domestic violence, call 112."


"All JCDecaux outdoor posters have their own address, so the system picks the 15 closest posters to the crime scene and they will appear to the streets overnight," TBWA account director Juha-Matti Raunio tells AdFreak.

The campaign featured seven such placements in 14 days. 

"Unfortunately there are still too many domestic violence calls here in Finland," Raunio says. "In a way, this is world's first outdoor campaign you hope that no one would see, but as Finland ranks really high in domestic violence per capita, that hasn't been the case yet."

"The second phase is planned for the spring, where well gather the learnings of the first campaign and develop it even further," adds creative director Mikko Pietilä.

The creative itself is also innovative. It shows a kitchen scene, which during the daytime looks normal—but after dark, a background lights switches on to reveal the signs of domestic violence, like black light does at a real crime scene.

The tagline is, "You cannot wipe off violence."

Client: Helsinki Police Department
Campaign: You cannot wipe off violence
Agency: TBWA\Helsinki
Executive Creative Director: Jyrki Poutanen
Creative Director: Mikko Pietilä
Account Director, VP: Juha-Matti Raunio
Art Director: Kalle Wallin
Copywriter: Laura Hukkanen
Designer: Matti Virtanen
Photographer: Mikko Ryhänen
Film: Iiro Hokkanen

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