Shortlisted for 2020 Sabre Award

The economic and social benefits of cultural heritage aren’t hot topics for Kenya’s young population. But an increase in tourism leading to job creation is an important outcome for a country like Kenya, with a growing young population who need employment. This is the context for our PR campaign dubbed “Cultural Heritage for Inclusive Growth” by our client, The British Council, as part of its mandate to explore creative responses to global challenges.

Gong Kenya’s brief was to encourage a priority audience of 18 to 35-year-olds to want to learn about, protect, and value Kenya’s cultural heritage in order to engage and benefit from it more fully.

Our digital-first strategy, titled #CultureGrows, called on cultural organisations and creative enterprises to provide input into a long list of names in response to the question, “Who’s your Cultural Hero?”.

The nominees – each leaders in their respective fields that included film, fashion, food and art – starred in a specially commissioned photography exhibition and shared key messages on their social channels to communicate their place on the list.

Mashujaa Day provided the peg on which to announce the winners, who included chef Ali Mandhry, fashion designer Ann McCreath and film director Wanuri Kahiu. Media engagement around the event generated extensive local coverage.

This work was recognised by the PR industry’s most prestigious global awards, The Sabre Awards, for superior achievement in branding and reputation in the educational and cultural institutions category. Gong Kenya subsequently won the pitch to manage communications for the British Council’s East Africa Arts programme across the region.

“Gong showed great strategic insight into our challenge, thinking through the elements that make up cultural resonances and build national pride. They interpreted these into a campaign that generated authentic content and gained great traction through fresh, smart use of a solid format – in this case to find the most influential cultural icons in Kenya. The outcomes hit all of the KPIs and the content continues to inspire and delight our audiences in relevant social channels.”

Maureen Anzaye-Kubai, Project Manager, British Council East Africa Arts



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