A Peek into Santa’s Workshop: The Making of 25 Days of Awesome

By Shawna Samuelson / Dec 15, 2016



To help celebrate Oliver Russell’s 25th anniversary, we created a daily holiday sweepstakes contest called 25 Days of Awesome. This contest features 25 different products from socially responsible B Corps™, with the goal of raising awareness for awesome companies and awesome products—and, of course, doing awesome creative work.

Oh, the Too-tight Timeline Was Frightful

We came up with the idea behind the promotion while brainstorming how to celebrate our silver anniversary earlier this fall. We thought the concept was exciting—and the opportunity to work with fellow B Corps is always a welcome prospect—but the timeline was more than a little daunting! It was nearly October! Just two months before we would want to launch our sweepstakes website! Could we really pull this together in time? And, gasp, make it functional?

But the Creative Was So Delightful

Instead of getting discouraged, we promptly donned our ugly Christmas sweaters and dug in. The first item on our long list of tactics was branding. We already had the name 25 Days of Awesome tying numerically into our 25th anniversary. And we leveraged the advent calendar concept people are familiar with around the Christmas holiday. Our designers all pitched in ideas for a quick-turn (eek…two day) logo exploration.


Fortunately, we’ve learned that sometimes the best work is produced within a tight timeline. We knew the logo needed to be fresh and fun, but also clean and legible. We had quite a few good contenders, but we soon gravitated toward a custom hand-lettered option that offered just the right amount of whimsical flair. The logo’s slight upward rise to the mark gave the feeling of anticipation and excitement—just what we wanted to convey. We also paired the logo with the smaller subhead ‘Free stuff from good companies’ to help give a quick explanation of the concept.


Now that the logo was chosen, we needed to develop the look and feel for our creative. We had no time to waste, so we decided to reflect our designs on the campaign’s main element—the sweepstakes landing page. Since our promotion would take place during the holiday season (and end on Christmas, no less), we knew we needed a hint of holiday spirit in our design. We looked at two concepts, one with a more straight-forward ‘Happy holidays’ feeling, and one with a much untraditional holiday theme. 


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  • While this brand was separate from our Oliver Russell brand, we felt like it was important that the concept be connected to our brand personality. With traits like ‘energetic, confident, smart, and eclectic,’ we felt encouraged to go with our gut and stray from tradition—and hopefully help our little-promotion-that-could stand out in a crowded holiday market. 


    A Monster of a Concept is Born

    Our selected design featured a modern holiday color palette and holiday monsters (forget elves) who were up to some quirky mischief. Even though we had no time in our ultra-expedited timeline, we couldn’t keep ourselves from programming looped animations for all seven of our monster friends to help give them a healthy helping of personality.

    Because the concept’s success hinged on a daily sweepstakes, we couldn’t let the monsters steal the show. That’s why we made the doors consumers would open big and bold to help guide the user experience. And last but not least, we knew the site needed to be responsive to work well on mobile (a given for any website we build these days).

    25Days 1

    Keep Calm and Get Your Ho Ho Ho On

    Did I mention that while we were building the website we were also targeting and contacting tons of B Corps to provide products for each door? Oh, and crafting full terms and conditions for our sweepstakes (no fun whatsoever)…as well as preparing a toolkit of assets to give to our partner B Corps to promote their participation in the contest? All while setting up the daily contests, managing the social media accounts, and preparing a PR plan for promotion? 


    No small feat for a two-month timeline, but we enjoyed the hectic schedule and are happy with ALL the results, from the final creative to the public’s increased awareness of B Corps. Not to mention the additional social media followers we are gaining for our agency and partners along the way. 


    25 Days of Awesome goes through Christmas. Be sure to enter daily—some of the best prizes are still to come! 



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    Thumbnails People Shawna Samuelson

    Shawna Samuelson

    As senior producer, Shawna's job is to work with the client, orchestrate a network of resources, and deliver the project on time and on budget. She guides Fortune 50 clients such as Hewlett-Packard at the same time she’s helping a scrappy startup like MealTicket. Positive, professional, and a bona-fide people person, Shawna knows how to earn clients’ trust—not just because of who she is, but also because she flat-out gets it done.