Mighty Blog

Ciceron: Not your average agency

Ciceron co-founders Andrew Eklund and Kraig Larson
Ciceron co-founders Andrew Eklund (left), CEO, and Kraig Larson, chief creative officer

Children’s Minnesota selected Ciceron as our digital agency partner in 2014. From day one, Ciceron has demonstrated expertise and leadership in something called brand advocacy: a philosophy that sees a company’s target market as their biggest potential asset in terms of positive social influence. As such, Ciceron has been instrumental in informing and supporting our digital engagement across nine social media platforms. In 2015, Ciceron also played an integral role in the comprehensive redesign of the Children’s Minnesota website while bringing our brand to life across all digital properties.

But Ciceron’s impact at Children’s hasn’t stopped there. Our partnership has evolved far beyond a business relationship. It turns out their passion for helping the most amazing people on earth runs just as deep as our own 5,000-plus employees and volunteers.

In 2015, Ciceron helped us design a new sponsorship platform for Children’s signature fundraising event, Star Gala. Given the success of this event, tickets are sold out months in advance, so we wanted to figure out how to increase social engagement for attendees and non-attendees alike. By adding interactive digital elements — which we called a “hashtag challenge” in 2015 and “selfie challenge” in 2016, we were able to get Children’s supporters engaged in social media and sharing their support with their own social network leading up to and during the event.

Ciceron’s positive energy and generous personal investment behind the challenges — $35,000 in matching gifts to date — reflect their playful spirit as a organization and their dedication and passion in caring for kids, all while employing their highly valued expertise in the digital space. In 2015, the Star Gala hashtag used at the event was the No. 3 trending topic on Twitter in the Twin Cities metro area, resulting in more than 1.7 million potential impressions for Children’s Star Gala.

Children's Star Gala
The 25th annual Children’s Star Gala took place April 16, 2016.

After two years of philanthropic partnership with Ciceron, we are learning to understand our audience better: broadening our reach and engaging both supporters at our signature events and a larger audience of Children’s supporters in the social space who now have a unique way to engage and participate from wherever they are.

“It’s important for us to continually challenge our own expectations for this event. Children’s Star Gala raises more than $2 million each year to support the amazing kids cared for in our system, and Ciceron has helped us share the magic of that evening with a much broader audience.” Bjorn Gunnerud, vice president, Marketing and Communications