With a firm belief that everyone could use a little kindness right now, retailer SPAR leveraged the power of social media to create a wave of positivity with #SpreadSmiles.
SpreadSmiles is a unique initiative aimed at promoting goodwill to support vital causes and positive community changes.
The campaign came to an end last week with a total of R1 million handed over to four worthy organisations – The Smile Foundation, Sisters For Life, READ Educational Trust, and Meals on Wheels. Each of the organisations received a cheque for R250,000.
Maxine D’Amico, Promotions & Advertising Manager at SPAR Inland said:“We have no doubt that these organisations will continue their remarkable work in their communities and pay it forward, addressing critical social issues related to nutrition, education, and gender equality. Each a core focus of The SPAR Group’s ongoing upliftment efforts.”
In a world grappling with challenges and uncertainties, the #SpreadSmiles challenge was simple. Social communities were asked to create a piece of content that showed how they have encouraged kindness, spread joy or happiness, or have made a positive change, however small, in their community and to others.
For every time the hashtag #SpreadSmiles was posted to social media alongside a video that shows how the participant brought a smile to the face of another, SPAR Inland would donate R10 (per hashtag) to each of the four beneficiary organisations.
More than just hashtag
The campaign was more than just a hashtag, it was a call to action that aimed to uplift communities and support those in need. The thousands of shoppers who participated helped generate awareness and smiles, while making a positive change to countless lives, all resulting in donations.
The #SpreadSmiles hashtag was used over 112,314 times across Facebook, X/Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok, and 23,157 took up the challenge by submitting their unique submissions.
Over six weeks, the campaign transcended digital boundaries by using local landmark buildings in Pretoria, Mbombela, Rustenburg, Bloemfontein, and Kimberley as temporary billboards to deliberately draw attention to the campaign, and actively recruit South Africans to become a part of the movement.
“In the face of the very many challenges that South Africans are facing right now, we hope the #SpreadSmiles feeling continues in our homes, our workplaces and our communities, and that spreading kindness will become an everyday practice because, as we’ve seen, smiles have the power to uplift, inspire, and create positive change”, concluded D’Amico.