The "do good" concept chain reaction

Last week, Hill Holliday launched a new ad campaign for Liberty Mutual. The concept for the ads is responsibility with a new tagline "What's your policy?". In the TV spot, we see one person doing something nice/helpful to someone else, who in turn does something nice, etc...and we follow the chain reaction.

Back in 2003, Arnold Worldwide (whom Hill beat out when it won the Liberty Mutual account back in October) had some ads for VW Beetle Convertible that did the exact same thing. It won awards at the One Show, Cresta, and LIAA in 2003. Is it a coincidence that both agencies are just blocks away from each other in the same city? Who knows.

There is also another campaign, which is more recent. Hilton's new "Be Hospitable" by Foote Cone & Belding also shows people doing nice things for strangers. The microsite for the campaign even asks visitors to share their stories of kindness from a stranger. It's very similar with the exception of the chain reaction motif.

See all the ads inside.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find any VW press releases on the web still. My googlefu must be off. But I did find them for Liberty Mutual and Hilton...
From the press release for Liberty Mutual:

The new campaign expresses the responsibility theme through actions of ordinary people doing small, but responsible things to make every day life a little bit better.

"Responsibility is a core value for people and is at the heart of our mission to help people live safer, more secure lives," said Steve Sullivan, Liberty Mutual Group senior vice president, communications. "Our new advertising reinforces this core value while asking consumers the thought-provoking question, 'Does your insurer share your philosophy?'"

Mike Sheehan, president and CEO of Hill Holliday said, "Liberty Mutual is a rock-solid brand with a powerful story to tell. As we developed the campaign, the theme of 'responsibility' quickly rose to the top. It's an authentic, differentiating rallying cry for Liberty Mutual and its customers. Beyond being strictly about Liberty Mutual, this campaign is about recognizing, celebrating and 'living' responsibility."

Here's the Hilton press release on the campaign:

"With the be hospitable message, we are drawing upon our long heritage and deep culture based on our founder’s vision. We know that warmth, compassion and a smile can make a difference in a traveler’s visit and so at all Hilton Family properties, our team members bring the spirit of our be hospitable philosophy to every guest interaction."

The company hopes to inspire team members and others to carry the be hospitable message into every aspect of their lives, with the notion that one simple gesture of common courtesy extended to one individual inspires that same individual to carry another act of kindness forward.

Liberty Mutual: Responsibility

VW Beetle: Chain Reaction

Hilton Hotels: Be Hospitable

Adland® is supported by your donations alone. You can help us out by buying us a Ko-Fi coffee.
Anonymous Adgrunt's picture
Files must be less than 1 MB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg gif png wav avi mpeg mpg mov rm flv wmv 3gp mp4 m4v.
Plywood's picture

Last Xmas or the Xmas before that, there was a spot in Canada for I can't remember who - maybe Coke? Honda? - with the same chain reaction of good deeds set around Xmas shopping downtown, ending back at the first character.

And obviously, there's Pay it Forward, the movie (released in 2000), which predates everything you're talking about by at least 3 years.

Dabitch's picture

Chain-reactions seem quite popular ever since. While they're good badlandian coincidences I think this is one of those cases where the brief begs the idea... Well, except the VW one.

MaryWills's picture

What!? The Liberty Mutual is rubbish and you know it.

Dabitch's picture


caffeinegoddess's picture

What'd ya know - found another spot using the same sort of "do good" contagious concept.

Dabitch's picture

It must be contagious !

caffeinegoddess's picture

Gotta be because now there's the campaign for Heineken that's going down a similar route.