Dublin Bus is held up as one of Europe’s best in class LGBTQ+ employers. 2018 was their 10th year supporting Dublin Pride. To mark this milestone, they wanted to do something special. However, supporting Pride has become a more challenging task as the LGBTQ+ community increasingly see brands using Pride as a branding opportunity instead of to genuinely support the event. So, Dublin Bus aimed to steer the conversation back to what’s important about Pride – People.
The 2018 Pride festival was themed ‘We are family’. Over the last decade, Dublin Bus has seen lots of proud family members showing their support at Pride, but they noticed one important member was missing – dads. Although dads wanted to show their support, they didn’t feel they could go to Pride without an invite.
This year Dublin Bus had the Proudest bus at Pride -not the one with the most rainbow flags or glitter, the one with the proudest people – Proud Dads. Dublin Bus literally gave dads a vehicle to show their love and support. In doing so it sent a strong message to the community, Dads, you are welcome at Pride and your kids want, need and value your support.
When speaking to GCN magazine, one of the kids, Davy said ‘Hearing dad talking about how much he loves me and how proud he is of me tapped into something I’d never known I needed to hear’. These Proud Dads opened up a conversation of real importance in the LGBTQ+ community, one that was dormant even in the people that needed this support. Within a week, these Proud Dads became global figures of love, acceptance and Pride. There is no question that dads will be welcome at Pride next year.
The video was viewed 7.5 million times in the first week. Organic shares drove the reach of the campaign and we melted the hearts of the LGBTQ+ community, celebrities, politicians, publications and the public. Proud Dads featured in editorial and broadcast coverage in 17 countries; 90 articles appeared in 70 publications. All of this led to approximately 136 million impressions across the globe. The most important result however, was opening up a conversation of real meaning in the LGBTQ+ community.