Today is Blog Action Day 2010 and the topic everyone around the world will be talking about is water, clean and safe drinkable water. Something most of us take for granted but almost a billion people (3 times the population of US) don’t have access to.

This inspiring case study from Droga5 for UNICEF marks —I believe— a before & after in the industry, at the time setting a new benchmark on what advertising can achieve and how do we present this kind of integrated work in film.

Not to say that big activation platforms didn’t exist prior to it but I think this one was the first to show the power of a simple idea focused on how to influence people’s behaviour, not their knowledge or their beliefs. Instead of trying to convince people of how desperate the global water crisis really is, they just made it easy (almost invisible) for people to donate.

The film itself is beautifully crafted. It packs a lot of information, yet it was kept simple and emotional. It was one of the first I remember using a documentary approach and included bits like client’s praise of the work and clips of media coverage (standard features in case studies today).

The campaign won a well deserved Titanium Lion, the most sought-after trophy at Cannes. But the most exciting part is that it wasn’t just a campaign. It was a platform. A platform that transcended time, geographies and agendas. The project was repeated year after year not just in NYC but across different cities in the States. Other agencies other than Droga5 joined to help. How many campaigns can attract that kind of support?

We recently covered some of the Tap Project’s most recent work. Here’s the 2010 video showing the progress of the campaign so far:

As pointed out in the video and earlier on this post, the problem is still there. Go ahead and join the Tap Project or check Blog Action Day 2010 for other ways to participate.

And don’t forget to write about it if you have a blog or a twitter account.

Regional Executive Creative Director, Geometry Global Asia Pacific