End Florida Shark Fin Trade by Spark - The Drum


Ahead of Shark Week 2019, We Partnered with the Ad Agency, Spark, to Help End Florida Shark Fin Trade

In 2018 Mark Cuban went on Discovery’s Shark Week in an effort to raise $50,000 for us, and shared an alarming statistic. Sunny Florida is the number one shark fin trade hub in the United States, contributing to the dismemberment and death of over 100,000,000 sharks globally every year. “I don’t think Floridians realize that more finned sharks go through the ports of Miami than anywhere else,” said Cuban. “We need to stop that.” We didn’t win the $50,000, but the jarring call-to-action hit home with Florida-based advertising agency SPARK. Shortly after the episode aired, our executive director Stefanie Brendl took a call with the agency about a collaboration, and for the past year, SPARK and Shark Allies have been working on campaign materials made to make Floridian’s double take. To recreate the same jarring effect Cuban’s Shark Week plea had on them, the SPARK and Shark Allies teams designed posters, t-shirts, social media graphics and a unique landing page all created to stir up conversation and make Floridians double-take, just like they did. How? Take familiar symbols like the state of Florida outline and flag, a fishing boat’s net, or a shark’s jaws, and give them a double meaning.

See Website Here: nofinfl.com

“We didn’t want to be overly scientific--it’s a complicated issue to be sure,” said Jay Heffron, the project’s copywriter. “But solving this issue is up to everyone, and we wanted this work to be impactful, even for those without a Ph.D. in marine biology. The work directs to an immersive landing page designed to take visitors deeper into finning, diving through jarring stats and common misconceptions about the practice. With Shark Week 2019 around the corner and Shark-Con hitting Tampa Bay the weekend of July 12, the campaign is in motion, and Shark Allies is calling on Floridians to think about the events a bit differently this year. “We’re asking people to share knowledge with their fellow Floridians, said Brendl. “The more people understand this practice, the more they realize it can’t continue. And we need those voices to support us in Florida’s upcoming legislative sessions in Fall 2019.”

(words from SPARK Press Release)

Laurel Irvine