The Historic Floods of 2023 in Southern Brazil
2024 Finalist

The Historic Floods of 2023 in Southern Brazil

Zero Hora

Porto Alegre, Brazil

Category Social Media

Overview of this campaign

In September 2023, Rio Grande do Sul was severely hit by a storm that caused historic floods in the region. Entire cities were engulfed by rivers, roads were obstructed, isolating communities, and hundreds of houses disappeared. Fifty-three people lost their lives, and five were never found until January 2024.

Our coverage of this tragedy reached surprisingly high metrics, and reverberated around the world, making news in international media such as BBC, The New York Times and CNN.

GZH´s team worked multimedia, directly from the sites. On air, text and live on camera, we delivered content to the app and website. It was a hard, collective and very delicate work, during a dramatic situation. With responsibility and sensibility, GZH´s journalists were able to reveal the real dimension of the tragedy.

On social media, the stories we told gained repercussion and mobilized our audience into a network of solidarity. 

Results for this campaign

The work has proved extremely relevant to our public, and that translated in record numbers and engagement on social media, especially on Instagram.

In 2023, GZH´s profile on Instagram gained 84.720 new followers, 27.378 of which in September. That means, in one month we conquered 23% of all the new followers of the year.

That leads to the conclusion that whoever started following GZH then was searching for information and found it on our profile. And that proves the relevance of professional journalism in crucial moments like that one. The growth of our fan base took our content further.

Together, the videos of floods and the coverage that followed published on Reels had 13.624.337 impressions, the best result of the year, and they keep on adding visualizations.

GZH´s team was the first to get to Roca Sales, one of the most devastated cities after the flooding of Rio Taquari. Local people narrated the tragedy in video, and it had 609.190 views.

We also flew over the affected region, and the aerial images were played at least 545.936 times. Closing top 3, the rescue of dogs from flooded areas went viral with 521.504 views.

Besides the live broadcasting and real time coverage on site and app, our work on social media helped society. We told stories of people who lost everything, we followed the reconstruction of the cities, we pressed authorities for answers and action, and we taught people how to help others, forming a network of solidarity. Our audience members rallied among themselves to help.



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