ChildObesity180 came to us with one of the biggest challenges we’ve ever faced: How to get kids to choose water over soda, activity over video games, and fruits and veggies over salty snacks.

It isn’t easy getting kids to give up something fun and easy for something worth more later. So we decided to tell the truth: Making the right decision is hard. It takes GRIT.

We created a web-based campaign designed to reward kids for making tough choices. The idea is that small decisions pay off in the long run by enabling kids to reach their own personal goals. Messaging was targeted to both kids and to their role models: the adults who work with them in the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4H, and Pop Warner Football.


We created an identity with a little edge. If there’s one thing that kills cool in kids’ eyes, it’s being treated like a child.

Our website for GRIT was an interactive playground as well as a resource center. Kids and activity leaders could share whatever is their personal GRIT — what goal keeps them motivated to make the right decisions — directly through the website, or via Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, and see it populate on the website in real time.

The home page of the site was a collection of user-generated photos, videos, and words showcasing their personal stories. Peppered throughout the grid of crowdsourced content were tips leaders could use to encourage healthy habits, see how healthy their group is compared to the rest of the nation, and learn about the science behind healthy choices.

We turned our crowdsourced GRIT homepage into a casting-call for posters and print ads. The most inspirational and unique GRIT submissions could be made into real ads starring real kids.

The campaign partnered with organizations such as the Boy Scouts of America to spread the message that healthy habits matter to success in anything.

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