TRANSFORMING LIVES for CENTRE FOR ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH

TRANSFORMING LIVES

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Industry Charities, Foundations, Volunteers
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Released July 2012

Credits & Description

Category: Charity and Not for Profit
Advertiser: CENTRE FOR ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH
Product/Service: ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS
Chief Creative Officer: Aaron Starkman (Zig)
Executive Creative Director: Martin Beauvais (Zig)
Copywriter: Steve Conover (Zig)
Art Director: Simon Tuplin (Zig)
Planner: Peter Kaegi (Zig)
Planner: Subtej Nijjar (Zig)
Project Manager: Jackie Galvin (Zig)
Illustrator: Essam Basta (Stantec Architecture)
Photographer: Lise Varrette
Retoucher: Jeremy Thompson (Zig)
Print Producer: Julie Riley (Zig)
Agency Producer: Karen Blazer (Zig)
Media placement: Teaser Billboards - TSA - 22, March 2010
Media placement: Billboards - TSA - 6, April 2010
Media placement: Radio - CHFI - 6, April 2010

Summary of the Campaign
CAMH, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health is Canada’s leading mental health hospital. It is in the process of building a new kind of hospital where being part of the community is part of the treatment. But mental health and addiction are causes riddled with stigma. To overcome this challenge, we decided to leverage the neighbourhood where our hospital resides. It’s in a bustling, trendy neighbourhood that is in the middle of a condo boom. So we thought, what if we promoted CAMH’s new facility as a new condo? We named ourselves 1001 Queen St. W – “Toronto’s most life changing address”. And we used condo-like radio commercials and outdoor posters, created condo-like hoarding to surround the site and even convinced a local developer to donate a model suite, which we placed on site. The outcome was outstanding. We received coverage on 3 TV networks, thousands visited our model suite, bloggers and print media praised our original approach and one couple was so impressed they donated $1 million on the spot. Other corporations and individuals have kicked in $20 million. And CAMH’s awareness is at an all time high of over 80%.

The Goal
The goal of this campaign was to spark awareness of the new development at CAMH and secondarily, to spur donations to CAMH. Our target audience was urban, younger (between 30 and 45) and interested in social causes and a really nice downtown condo. We did a tracking study before we launched our campaign to get a benchmark on CAMH’s awareness levels prior to our PR innitiative. And we tracked immediately following the campaign so we could directly attribute any raise in awareness to one source – our “Condo campaign”.

Results
Reaction in blogs and newspaper articles was overwhelmingly positive. People were initially fooled and then delighted to find out the real cause. We received TV coverage from 3 networks and our groundbreaking reveal ceremony was attended by government figures and celebrities. One couple was so moved by the idea they donated $1 million on the spot. Corporations and individuals pooled together to donate $20 million to the cause. And finally, CAMH’s awareness has gone through the roof now topping over 80%!

Execution
Because of the size and scope of the project we borrowed some language and imagery from a category that gets people excited about buildings every day – the real estate category. Two weeks prior to the launch we ran condo-like bus shelter posters around the site, put up condo-like hoarding and ran condo-like radio, that lead people to the model suite or a website. We launched the reveal at the groundbreaking ceremony surrounded by press and government officials, we officially revealed what was really happening at the CAMH site in radio and newspaper and on our website. The model suite was set up like a condo sales office, with staff and modern furniture. As people entered they could get a walk through of the site, learn about CAMH’s “world first” facility and could donate right on the spot.

The Situation
CAMH was undertaking a major new re-development of their hospital where being part of the community is part of the treatment. But mental health and addiction are causes riddled with stigma. People are reluctant to give. CAMH needed to break through charity donor fatigue and fight the stigma associated with donating to mental illness. And of course, CAMH had extremely limited funds to achieve their rather challenging goals. Their total budget for execution and media was a mere $675 K(Canadian funds).

The Strategy
CAMH is transforming the way we care for people with Addiction and Mental Health issues. The new CAMH development will be a “world first” spanning 27 acres and will include streets, parks and retail. We wanted to breakthrough the vast tonnage of public service and specifically hospital fund-raising efforts in an unexpected way with a very innovative solution. We decided to leverage the neighbourhood where our hospital resides. It’s in a bustling, trendy neighbourhood that is in the middle of a condo boom. So we thought, what if we promoted CAMH’s new facility as a new condo?