FARC operation: Christmas campaign


Grand Prix

Gold Award


This paper demonstrates how Colombia successfully demobilised members of the oldest guerrilla group in the world, Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, which commits a terrorist act on average once every three days. Insight revealed that Christmas is the most sensitive period for this group. Consequently, “operation Christmas” was created: two antiguerrilla contingents and two Black Hawk helicopters travelled into the jungle to cover trees with 2,000 LED lights, alongside banners exhorting the guerrillas to lay down their arms. The message encouraged 331 FARC members to demobilise and re-enter society. The year-on year reduction in guerrilla numbers is estimated to return more than £2.3 million to the Colombian government through tax receipts and a ROMI of £11.35. The benefits to Colombian society and economy through a reduction in FARC’s illegal “fundraising” is estimated to be £1 million in the first year.

Judge’s comment

The judges were all in agreement that this case was something special. The profound insight and creative execution should be hailed as an inspiration for the industry. A definitive winner for the Grand Prix.

Lord Black, executive director, Telegraph Media Group


GOLD Award
Grand Prix Sponsored by Thinkbox

FARC operation Christmas campaign

Through appealing to the humanity of the Colombian guerrillas, the FARC Christmas campaign successfully encouraged 331 members to demobilise. This is estimated to return more than £2.3 million to the government, and a ROMI (Return On Marketing Investment) £11.35. You can find out more about this excellent campaign and the other worthy winners from 2011 right here. Many congratulations to all!


Title FARC operation Christmas campaign

Client Colombian Ministry of Defence

Entrant Lowe-SSP3

Authors Mihir Warty, Jane Dorsett, Lowe and Partners; Marialejandra Urbina, Juan Pablo García, Lowe-SSP3

Credited companies Creative agency: Lowe-SSP3; client: Colombian Ministry of Defence