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Elasticity Campaign for H&R Block Takes Home Industry Honor


Pitted against an impressive collection of global agencies and brands, Elasticity’s ‘Stache Act campaign, on behalf of client H&R Block, was honored as the winner of the Wow! Award category recognizing out-of-the-box creative campaigns during the 2012 PR News Platinum Awards ceremony.

“Every once in a while, though, a campaign comes along that just blows you away,” wrote PR News wrote in a post about the award. “Take the case of Wow! Award winner H&R Block. H&R Block teamed with their agency Elasticity to expand awareness of the brand to the critical 21-35 year-old male demographic.”

Coming on the heels of Elasticity’s award-winning “Charter Center Stage” campaign for client Charter Communications, H&R Block engaged the agency to create a campaign that would break through today’s cluttered media landscape and help reposition the the brand in a meaningful way that drove revenues during tax season.

“We are focused on changing perceptions of H&R Block and are extremely proud that our work has been recognized by our peers,” Scott Gulbransen, Director of Social Business Strategy at H&R Block, said from inside a men’s room stall at New York’s LaGuardia Airport. “Working with the exceptional and creative team at Elasticity on The Stache Act campaign was the most enjoyable experience I’ve had in my career. If there are still brands who don’t know who they are, they will now.”

The offbeat ‘Stache Act campaign partnered H&R Block with the American Mustache Institute. It humorously proposed a $250 tax deduction for people with facial hair, and committed charitable dollars to Millions From One for each person who ‘stached their photo at StacheAct.com or walked in the Million Mustache March in Washington, D.C., on April 1, 2012.

“Using a mixture of politics, whimsy and genius, H&R Block created a campaign involving a proposed bill (the ‘Stache Act) that would provide a $250 tax cut to anyone sporting a mustache,” PR News added. “Mixing an array of staged events, social media blasts, media outreach and a charity tie-in, H&R Block kicked off the campaign with a President’s Day announcement from the steps of the United States Capitol. The impact was immediate.”

PR News’ Platinum PR Awards salute the year’s most outstanding communications initiatives and programs, and Elasticity’s Aaron Perlut addressed some 300 communications professionals gathered at the Grand Hyatt in New York City in accepting the honor.

“I wanted to thank NFL players and Jesus Christ, ah, H&R Block and Elasticity, and Herman Cain with the ‘Pizza Pizza,’ and thank you Screen Actors Guild,”Perlut, dressed in character as Borat Sagdiyev, said after hugging comedian Vanessa Hollingshead (full video below).

Elasticity’s Brian Cross, also in attendance, had a more reasoned response to winning the award.

“As much as we make fun of the industry’s obsession with awards, it’s a very nice honor,” he said. “The team put in a lot of hard work and it was an immensely rewarding experience to even compete with some of these great agencies and brands for the award. Did I mention I wrote the Herman Cain – Pizza Pizza line?”

Honorable mentions for the Wow! Award included:

  • Downy with DeVries Public Relations – Downy Puts Mike in the Window for Clean Sheet Week.
  • GM Western Region Communications & Weber Shandwick – Chevy Drive N Date Revs Up Speed Dating Like Never Before.
  • Hill+Knowlton Strategies – The Force is Strong with “Star Wars: The Complete Saga” on Blu-Ray.
  • Jennie-O Turkey Store – Jennie-O Creates Turkey Burger Converts One Switch at a Time.
  • Major League Baseball – MLB Fan Cave.
  • The Venetian Resort-Hotel Casino – The Venetian and The Palazzo Las Vegas Announce First-Ever Winter in Venice Holiday Celebration.




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