A digital campaign to support Regional Victorians in tough times.


An initiative of the Handshake Agency, supported by the Victorian Government, Recharge Vic is an interactive online hub dedicated to supporting the people of regional Victoria after the devastation of the bushfires, and now the isolation of a global pandemic.

South Social were engaged in both the build of the interactive site, and the digital marketing required to bring people to the site.

Set with clear and challenging objectives from the outset, we were tasked with launching a brand from scratch that would gain traction, and obtain a sufficient snapshot level of engagement, that could be utilised to establish grounding and good function for the initiative.


Our aim was to create a brand with a message that reflected compassion and understanding by first making people feel like their voice was heard.

The interactive element of Recharge VIC would use our sophisticated bot technology to build a conversational survey profiling exactly what the readers would like to read whilst creating a snapshot of how Regional Victorians were coping.

We needed to cover a vast variety of subjects to collect our user profiles so our conversation design needed to be super engaging to ensure a high completion rate.

On completion of the survey we would present the data to the team of writers the Handshake Agency put together who would then construct the articles from the results.

Our digital marketing strategy centred around viral incentivised gamification via our chatbot technology and included awareness campaigns across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter.


As this was a response package to a global pandemic which was already in full swing, we had a very tight timeline of 3 weeks to complete which presented a huge obstacle for the development team.

The majority of the build was from scratch and the conversation design needed to not feel intrusive to the potential long-term reader landing on the site for the first time. We live in an age of mild suspicion of such things – regardless of how cool the concept is.


  • Brand strategy and insights
  • Bot development
  • Custom survey and profiling
  • Website UX design
  • Website development
  • Media strategy
  • Social media advertising
  • Digital paid advertising


Our pre-launch marketing that contained the initial profiling was received well and created the desired ground swell for awareness, as well as capturing what people wanted to see. Campaigns were conducted across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

From the data and insights we obtained, a number of human interest and supportive media pieces have been developed in response to needs. We launched with over 30 custom articles covering mental health, sports, general interest, finance, food, and culture to name a few.

As our initial marketing included gaining permission to service a reminder across multiple channels, we had fantastic site visits and feedback to the launch and concept in general.

A dense social media campaign was launched to reach new people who hadn’t responded to the initial marketing call with a greater response, as this time around, we had the site itself as evidence to support the concept of an interactive site.

Shortly after launch we delivered the second incarnation of the survey transparently stating we were gathering insights to create a dedicated opinion piece documenting the lives of Regional Victorians living through these times.

This project has been a huge success, is still ongoing, and on track to cementing a place in Regional Victorian culture.

South Social intends on continuing a solid awareness and growth strategy moving forward.