The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA UK) is the only charity in the UK dedicated to supporting those affected by pulmonary hypertension.
We’ve been working with the charity for a number of years, producing their member magazine and other communications materials. In November 2016, they engaged our help to launch and manage their first ever awareness week. The brief was to encourage people to talk about pulmonary hypertension (PH) in order to raise the profile of this serious, life-limiting disease, and promote understanding of those who live with the condition.
PH affects just 7,000 people in the UK and impacts on their ability to carry out basic tasks and get around. Living with the chronic condition can also have a significant impact on emotional wellbeing and self-esteem.
As this was the first time the week ran, the client was keen to ‘test the water’ with a low budget campaign.
We identified the different audience segments and set about creating bespoke campaigns to talk to each of them. To harness the power of PHA UK members, best-placed to talk about how the condition affects them, we created an online resource hub, working with our design associate to produce downloadable tools for members and supporters. They included template letters to send friends and family and MPs, posters, and template press releases to help patients contact their own local media.
We knew that with a brief to spark and encourage conversations about PH, social media would be key to the success of the campaign. We created dedicated hashtags that allowed us to track conversations, and pushed out online content that brought the discussions to life.
A press release to launch the week was carefully constructed to incorporate the key messages of the campaign. Read the press release here.
PH Awareness Week gained media coverage in every country in the UK, including the Irish Examiner, Edinburgh Evening News, North Wales Daily Post and many local news outlets in England – including BBC Radio Leicester and the Coventry Observer.
Social media came alive with activity under the hashtags #PHWeekUK and #LetsTalkPH and many people affected by the conditions shared their stories online, via blogs and their social media accounts.
Organisations supporting PH Week on Twitter included GlaxoSmithKline and the British Heart Foundation, and the campaign moved a patient to create a video to mark the week, shared 152 times from the PHA UK Facebook page.
Focused work to encourage medical professionals to register for an educational course generated more sign-ups that week than in the rest of the year combined.