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Meet the Makers E9: CoorDown & SMALL - The Hiring Chain

How a worldwide Hiring Chain started with a single YouTube link.

The Hiring Chain performed by Sting showcases the compounding impact a great idea, a catchy song, and a little visibility can bring – leveraging sharing behaviour on YouTube to ripple its effect across the globe, helping employ people with Down Syndrome.

In this episode, we meet Luca Panesse, Co-Founder & ECD, SMALL; Karim Bartoletti, Executive Producer, Indiana Production; and Martina Fuga, Vice President in charge of Communication, CoorDown; the team behind The Hiring Chain. We uncover how they forged the first links of what could prove to be one of 2021’s most heartwarming creative pieces, and the invaluable tips they unlocked for creative makers along the way;

1. Zag against the category.

When it comes to building creative within a particular category, it’s easy to follow the path that’s already been laid. But CoorDown and SMALL wanted to challenge the preconceptions of audiences, and to do so, they knew they needed to tell a different kind of story.

“People with disabilities don’t want to be your inspiration”, explains Fuga, challenging a well-worn motif within creative work featuring people with disabilities.

“The more you see people with Down Syndrome at work, the more they will be hired”, explains Pannese, of their guiding insight for the work.

The power of visibility is showcased within the creative, and it plays out that impact as it’s shared across the internet.

2. Craft the details.

When landing a definitive and memorable message, an idea can live or die during development. “Producers and production people have to stretch the idea that is on a piece of paper as much as possible”, says Bartoletti. The storyboards, transitions, and music for The Hiring Chain were intensely labored over — a work in progress for close to two years.

The video was built to be as catchy and shareable as possible. “[it was] intended to be the catalyst of attention,” explains Pannese, “It had to be done in a way in which people actually felt that they could participate in the hiring chain”, adds Bartoletti.

Without paying attention to every detail of the creative process, an idea could easily miss the moments it needs to hit in order to create a shareable hiring chain of its own.

3. Clients are long-term collaborators.

Creatives know long-standing partnerships are integral to success — we see it in every successful Art Director & Copywriter duo. But of equal importance are their long-term relationships with clients.

Pannese explains, “We’ve been able to work with CoorDown throughout the years no matter which agency we’re at.” Along with his creative partner Luca Lorenzini, the pair began working with Fuga almost ten years ago on a brief for a poster — since then, it’s proved to be a relationship built on groundbreaking and effective work for the Down Syndrome community.

Just as The Hiring Chain shows how a little ‘foot traffic’ can go a long way to opening up opportunities for people with Down Syndrome, it also shows that the right amount of storytelling and craft can go a long way to building even more visibility online.

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