The Big Hello

Bringing the Department of Rural & Community Development's National Community Weekend to life!


Building on a national conversation around growing individualism, loneliness and isolation, the Department of Rural & Community Development (DRCD) wanted to see neighbours reconnect and have a celebration together which was open and inclusive for all at a very local level. During the 2019 May bank holiday weekend, the DRCD were encouraging people to get to know their neighbours, by hosting a local event on the inaugural National Community Weekend. 

The challenge was to create a brand identity that would resonate with communities across Ireland, especially those who were not particularly active in their local area. We needed to come up with a campaign that could be easily replicated in events around the country and ignite countrywide knowledge, awareness and support around the National Community Weekend. 


In response to the brief, TRA Brands created and developed the brand and assets for ‘The Big Hello’ to bring the national community weekend to life. 

The inspiration behind the ‘The Big Hello!’ was to welcome you and your neighbours into the National Community Day with open arms. Hello is traditionally the first thing you say when you first meet someone, it starts the conversation and helps you in making real connections. So we wanted to make sure that it was a big hello. ‘To everyone, For everyone’. 

With no ATL campaign in place, the DRCD relied heavily on PR and social media to communicate and activate The Big Hello! TRA Brands developed an integrated social, experiential and PR campaign to communicate the Big Hello messaging and call to action to host a local event.

We delivered a tiered campaign starting with a launch photo-call, national and regional press releases, two content sessions (photography & video) featuring the minister, key stakeholders and campaign ambassadors and recruited key personality Mairead Ronan to represent the campaign. Our internal digital team established a social media presence for the campaign, including ongoing maintenance of channels creating a wave of momentum right up until the May Bank Holiday weekend.  We also drafted and designed all of the communications touchpoints and materials instructing community groups on how to apply for their government grants. 



The campaign succeeded in the key objective of successfully launching the proposition and generating significant awareness of the Department of Rural & Community Development ‘s National Community Weekend branded ‘The Big Hello’.  Campaign communications generated widespread media coverage across all national and regional print & online sites, totalling 132 pieces of editorial coverage. Along with stellar media coverage results, the social media and content production for The Big Hello generated a potential reach of over 3million, with 1,300 social mentions and #TheBigHello trending throughout the May Bank Holiday weekend, with contributions from An Taoiseach, which certainly created a big surge of interest. 

The traditional and social media coverage achieved reinforced the DRCD’s core proposition of encouraging people to get to know their neighbours, as over 1,800 Big Hello events took place across the country throughout the May Bank Holiday weekend. 




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