Viral Social Media Campaign



Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation is a national nonprofit dedicated to providing college scholarships and educational counseling for children who have lost a parent in the line of duty. With a nationwide scope, Fallen Patriots has two primary goals: to raise funds to support scholarships and counseling, and to identify and enroll eligible students.

The organization has granted over $19 million in total assistance to hundreds of deserving students, but anticipates the need for funds to grow as more of the estimated 20,000 eligible students enter college.

Framing the Challenge

As a foundation, Fallen Patriots was faced with the need to generate awareness on a national scale through media that would reach new audiences and engaged supporters alike. Their growth and impact is contingent on gaining new supporters and reaching children who don’t know that they qualify for these scholarship opportunities, so Fallen Patriots needed something dynamic and big to break through engagement plateaus and expand their reach. 

Artwork used to spread awareness for the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge.

Artwork used to spread awareness for the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge.

Uncovering Insights & Building Opportunity

As a nonprofit, social media—specifically Facebook and Twitter—lent themselves particularly well to being cost-effective marketing and engagement tools. Leadership at Fallen Patriots wanted to launch what they hoped would become a viral campaign, and came up with the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge idea, where users record videos of themselves doing push-ups, pledge a dollar amount for each one and challenge three others to do the same.

In order to make #DropAndGiveMe10 the nationwide success it became, we brought our people-focused creativity to the table. We utilized:

  • Persistent and strategic public relations savvy
  • The foundation’s connected board
  • Engaged social listening techniques to maintain momentum
  • Creative shareable graphics that branded the campaign while integrating the signature look and feel of Fallen Patriots.  
  • Created specific #DropAndGiveMe10 social media pages in order to promote at any given time when someone completed the challenge.

The campaign was strategically launched on Memorial Day weekend by Bear Grylls, and then quickly spread across sports and entertainment to include New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees, Andy Cohen, Kathie Lee Gifford & Hoda Kotb, Matt Lauer and more.

A third of all NFL Cheerleaders participated in the campaign, along with corporations, government entities, restaurants and individuals all across the country.

While virality is a complex social media characteristic that requires organic success and appeal, a marketing agency that monitors and integrates digital assets to maximize impressions and galvanize valuable social media players is essential to capitalizing success, and that's exactly what Dion Marketing did for Fallen Patriots.


Tracking Success

The #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge earned Fallen Patriots millions of free social media impressions through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and millions more through digital web impressions through news stories, corporate postings and blog articles.  Being the longest-running campaign in the charity’s history, thousands of dollars have been sent in, and donations are still being collected. 

I'm doing the #DropAndGiveMe10 pushup challenge - I nominate Kathie Lee Gifford Drew Brees & Jesse Tyler Ferguson

Posted by Bear Grylls on Saturday, May 23, 2015

Bear Grylls nominated Drew Brees for the #DropAndGiveMe10 challenge - and he, along with his kids, accepted!

Posted by New Orleans Saints on Friday, May 29, 2015

Thank you to the New England Patriots Cheerleaders for nominating us to complete the #dropandgiveme10 push up challenge in honor of our nation's heroes and their families! We accept your challenge and now nominate the Denver Nuggets Dancers... Can you drop and give us 10?!

Posted by Denver Broncos Cheerleaders on Friday, July 17, 2015
Huffington Post Live segment featuring Fallen Patriots founders David and Cynthia Kim.

Huffington Post Live segment featuring Fallen Patriots founders David and Cynthia Kim.

Syracuse News Channel 9 covers the #DropAndGiveMe10 Challenge

Syracuse News Channel 9 covers the #DropAndGiveMe10 Challenge