American Greetings Asks ‘Who Are You Thankful For?’

New work from ad/PR agency Mullen.

Remember “The World’s Toughest Job?”

Sure you do — it won an honorable mention at the PR Week awards last week after scoring more than 23 million views on YouTube.

Now Mullen, the agency which handles both advertising and PR for American Greetings, launched a new campaign for the client that might be even more emotionally affecting.

“The ThankList” begins with a bit of research:

  • 95 percent of Americans think our culture “has a civility problem”
  • 87 percent are “willing to do something about it”

That “something” thankfully doesn’t involve any bar fights. Instead, the client and its agencies have encouraged followers to list people for whom they’re thankful with the hashtag #ThankList.

Here’s the trailer for the documentary series:

…and here’s its most powerful chapter, in which Air Force pilot Cholene gives thanks for an adopted son who was sold into slavery and blinded as a child:

We think we speak for most viewers when we say “wow.”

Of course, the campaign isn’t just video — the agency also got some celebrities and media influencers to promote it. Elizabeth Banks debuted the work on Jimmy Fallon’s show last night:

…and the client got media queen Arianna Huffington to host a panel on the #ThankList topic at New York’s New Museum yesterday:

The campaign’s homepage includes four more compelling documentary shorts directed by Oscar winner Barbara Kopple.

Note that none of the content ever mentions the product being promoted: basic greeting cards.

Nice work all around.