Bank of Marin’s Spirit of Marin Awards goes virtual with the help of Kiosk

Bank of Marin’s annual Spirit of Marin Awards has been a beloved community event since 1993, with over 300 honorees nominated by Marin County Chambers of Commerce for their dedication to volunteerism and community service. During a typical year, Bank of Marin hosts a joyous 500-person event at St. Vincent’s School for Boys, a location with its own rich history of community service. The event, a family-style luncheon in a beautiful courtyard setting, has a different keynote speaker each year and onstage acknowledgement of each honoree in the presence of the community they serve. It’s celebratory, it’s inspiring, and frankly — it’s kind of irreplaceable.

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic and the restrictions on large, in-person gatherings, the team at Bank of Marin knew they would have to pivot in order to recognize honorees without the traditional event format. Kiosk was up for the challenge when Bank of Marin asked for our help in finding a unique way to recognize honorees in a fully virtual environment. Our teams joined together for extensive brainstorming: how could we translate the community feel of the event with a virtual campaign? How could we replicate moments of pause for audience members and honorees? How could we convey the celebration and appreciation of honorees for the impactful work they do in our communities?

The result was a week-long campaign that leveraged print, digital, and social media to capture the magic of Bank of Marin’s 27th annual Spirit of Marin Awards and to meet our community members where they are — at home! We developed a creative concept that illustrated each honoree’s connection to one another: “Connecting Community. Stronger Together.” We were inspired by the idea that every positive action one person takes opens the door for the positive action of another, enhancing the impact any one of us could have on our own. We are stronger together.

The Spirit of Marin website was redesigned and developed to reflect this concept, complete with UX and UI improvements. A new page structure allows users to click on each honoree to learn more about their achievements, accomplishing our goal of preserving individual recognition for honorees in a virtual environment. We designed a suite of print and digital ads: ½-page and full-page print ads bookended the event, while ¼-page print ads and digital carousels showcased different honorees and created those moments of pause. Finally, we designed and coordinated a comprehensive social media campaign, complete with customized posts and images, to create that sense of unity for Bank of Marin, Marin County Chambers of Commerce, and each honoree.

It’s always a treat to do something a little out of the box, especially when that something celebrates the community in which Kiosk lives and works. Perhaps that is a positive aspect of 2020. Like Bank of Marin, Marin County Chambers of Commerce, and the 2020 honorees, we all have to readjust our expectations and our approach. And in doing so, we see more than ever — yes, we are stronger together.