Effective nonprofit social media marketing campaign example #9: Department of Health

Brogan & Partners 02/02/15 - 3:36 pm

Nothing makes you cringe more than an awkward conversation. And when you’re a young teen forced to talk about topics such as drugs, smoking, alcohol, and dare I say – sex, the last people you want to hear from is your parents. Yikes! We’d feel awkward for you.

But just because it’s awkward doesn’t mean it should be avoided. The Department of Health in England launched the Awkward Conversations Project and made it their goal to talk with teenagers about difficult (and embarrassing) issues that can be damaging to their health.

Research showed that stating the facts wasn’t enough to change behaviors. Rather, starting conversations was more effective in challenging teens to stop unhealthy behaviors. But since they were dodging these discussions with their parents, the Department of Health decided to find people who were already well-trusted by this target audience. Who better to use than the UK’s most popular teenage YouTube vloggers?  The Department of Health selected 10 vloggers and asked them to create relevant videos that would eventually lead to teen engagement and conversations.

The results? The videos received over 5 million views, over 130,000 likes, and all 10 videos were featured in the ‘Top 50 Most Liked Videos on YouTube’ on the day it was uploaded. But the campaigns biggest success was getting their audience to stop avoiding these conversations and to start talking. The campaign prompted an additional 19 video responses, which attracted an additional 4,500 views. Now that’s a successful marketing campaign we can’t stop talking about.   


Which of the 10 videos did you enjoy most? To see more nonprofits making a difference, check out the rest of my series, 10 Nonprofit Marketing Campaigns That Effectively Use Social Media.

Blog Category: Nonprofit Social Media

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