And the prize for best print advertising campaign goes not to a snack food or a shampoo – but to the Shin Bet, the Israeli security service that is a key player in nabbing terrorists before they are able to carry out their dastardly deeds. At a ceremony Wednesday night, the “Shabak Keeps Me Safe” campaign by the Gitam ad agency (affiliated with the international BBDO ad agency) was awarded the Golden Cactus, the highest honor in the Israeli ad industry.
The campaign was based on a simple message: that the main business of the Shin Bet is saving lives, and enabling Israeli civilians to live secure lives. The campaign consisted mostly of billboards, where street names had a letter highlighted, as the initial of one of the Shin Bet agents, with the subheading, “thanks to (initial), this street is safe.”
The purpose of the campaign was to recruit new agents, and as a result, the agency was inundated with thousands of resumes. According to the agency, the campaign yielded better than expected results, allowing it to draft not only junior agents, but senior staff as well. In addition, the campaign drew numerous individuals in areas of technology, such as programmers, who offered their services to the agency, even if they were not prepared to become field agents.