Power of Nonprofit Storytelling | An unlikely hero with a message: The life of Coleman F. Sweeney

August 8, 2016

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Humor has the ability to make us laugh, and laughter is the best medicine, but beyond laughter, can humor compel us to do even more?

The answer is a resounding “YES!” A new ad campaign, created by the Martin Agency for the Richmond-based Donate for Life, reminds us that this is true, through using a humorous narrative as a tool to target millennial men. Why is the campaign trying to reach men, aged 18-34? Because Donate for Life wants to encourage this demographic, which has dropped off in recent years, to register for organ donation.

Coleman F. Sweeney, the central figure around which the narrative revolves, is a very likely antagonist and a very unlikely protagonist, but he somehow manages to fill both pairs of shoes. Because in less than three minutes, Coleman transitions from antihero to hero. So take a look at this video, be ready to laugh until your belly hurts, and observe how in this instance, great humor is very important in accomplishing the feat of getting to the heart of what truly matters.

The video ad features a heavy dose of humorous storytelling that’s not only laughter-inducing, but a vehicle for a highly emotional, impactful mission. This is storytelling that is sincere in its purpose, emotionally compelling, and pretty damn funny, all at once.


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