Viral Campaign Asks, What’s The Most Honest City In America?

If you saw an unmanned dispenser of tasty iced tea, on sale for an honest dollar, would you leave the dollar or take the tea and walk away? A new viral campaign from Honest Tea asked people in America's biggest cities this very question in an attempt to find out which city is the most honest city in the United States.

If you saw an unmanned dispenser of tasty iced tea, on sale for an honest dollar, would you leave the dollar or take the tea and walk away? A new viral campaign from Honest Tea asked people in America’s biggest cities this very question in an attempt to find out which city is the most honest city in the United States. They set up unmanned displays of honest tea where the public could take a tea and pay a dollar for it…or not. Read on to find out the results of this social experiment. How many people do you think left the dollar? You may be surprised.

The video recap of the Honest Tea social experiment begins with a voiceover. “The great recession, financial bailouts, Wallstreet opulence, all wrought havoc on America’s integrity. So Honest Tea conducted a social experiment to find the most honest city in America, and hopefully redeem the land of Abraham Lincoln.” They set up tea displays with hidden cameras in cities around the United States – in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Atlanta, New York, Boston and New York. They watched as people wrestled with their conscience. Should they leave a dollar or not?

Turns out that Bostonians were the most honest, clocking in at 93.3%; followed by Washington DC tea lovers, at 93%; San Franciscans at 91%; New Yorkers and Atlanta tea lovers at 89%; Chicagoans at 78%; and Los Angeles residents, clocking in the least honest at 75%. Surprised?

The Honest Tea campaign drew all sorts of attention. According to the video, their social experiment resulted in 280 million total impressions, 160 press stories, $2.79 million in earned media, and double-digit growth in each of the cities where they held their experiment. Now the video is on YouTube where the campaign will continue to experience viral growth. What do you think of Honest Tea’s social experiment? And, more importantly, would you have left the dollar?