Saturday, September 29, 2012

Team World Vision Charity Grows with Grassroots Marketing

When some 1,600 runners take to the streets of the Windy City for the Chicago Marathon on Oct. 7, they will be doing so for a special cause — the charity Team World Vision.
Those 1,600 runners also will hold the distinction of being the largest single running group — among the more than 40,000 total runners — doing the marathon to support a single charity.
It’s am impressive accomplishment for a charity that was started only six years ago by Chicagoan Michael Chitwood. He wanted to create a charity to help raise awareness and money for clean water projects around the world, but especially in poverty-ridden third world countries where life is a constant struggle.
Chitwood’s charity has developed so many supporters in such a short time, in part, because he has had the help of fans in the local Chicago ad industry who have given of their time and talents to help market the charity itself and its good causes.
Chief among those helping market Team World Vision has been Chicago ad manNate Brown, who for each of the past couple of years has overseen the creation of a moving video to pique interest in the charity, as well as to interest people in running in the Chicago Marathon and other marathons nationwide to support Team World Vision.
Brown knows the value of marketing. He has worked at DDB/Chicago, one of the city’s largest ad agencies. Brown recently started working for Viscira, a San Francisco-based health care ad agency, but he will continue to live in Chicago.
A shortened version of the video Brown and his team developed last year ran as a public service announcement on the Fox and NBC TV stations in Chicago, as well as on Hulu. It was posted on YouTube as well.
new video intended to begin rounding up fans for the 2013 Chicago Marathon is just going up on YouTube. “It’s been a very grass roots marketing effort,” said Brown. And it has worked.

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