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Funny beats white papers and policy briefs Our experience using creative tools to interest people in

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Title: Funny beats white papers and policy briefs Our experience using creative tools to interest people in


1
Funny beats white papers and policy briefsOur
experience using creative tools to interest
people in health care reform
  • Rob Schneider
  • Health Action 2007
  • January 16, 2007

2
Overview of CU campaigns
  • Narrower focus but on issues that educate about
    bigger problems
  • SHI works for disclosure of hospital infection
    rates but also points out problems with patient
    safety and quality of care
  • Our micro-sites are designed for recruitment
  • narrow take action focus/high conversion rate
  • immediate actionno distractions
  • easy email opt-in
  • We use email as a way to tell the story of our
    campaign, retain activists and as campaign tool
    we direct people to specialized pages by email

3
Identify, Educate, Mobilize
  • Identify
  • Identify volunteers who will do more work
  • Identify civic leaders in the district who can
    communicate directly with elected officials
  • Identify people who have personal, compelling
    stories
  • Identify people with leadership and practical
    skills who can inspire/train others
  • Educate
  • Give them good information about various issues
    and ways they can help and repeat the messages
    over time.
  • Provide basic training in civic process through
    stories of success, through possible
    on-the-ground training in some limited contexts
  • Mobilize
  • Email to get them to send emails and make phone
    calls
  • Phone them to get them to make phone calls at a
    higher rate and possibly do district visits
  • Mail them with additional information that they
    can use to make their phone calls or start to
    meet others in their community
  • Encourage meetups and other forms of face to face
    communication with clear action goals
  • Provide virtual community tools where people can
    edit fact sheets, flyers, letters to legislators
    etc with their own local information

4
Health care advocatesWonks Wule!
  • Recent reports on health care reform
  • Illustrating the Potential Impacts of Adverse
    Selection on Health Insurance Costs in Consumer
    Choice Models, November 2006
  • Health Care Spending in the United States and
    OECD Countries, January 2007 
  • This paper analyzes data on health spending and
    national income from the Organisation for
    Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
    countries with above-average per capita national
    income.  We exclude countries with relatively low
    per capita income because they have fewer
    resources to devote to health care and other
    necessities and do not provide a reasonable
    comparison for spending in higher income
    countries.  We have provided footnotes where the
    OECD data show a break in series, indicating that
    the OECD data may not be comparable over the
    entire period that is being analyzed Germany is
    excluded from the time series exhibits because
    its data are not comparable over the time periods
    due to reunification.  The level of total health
    expenditure per capita is shown in U.S. dollars,
    adjusted for purchasing power parity (PPP).  Data
    on growth rates and health care as a percentage
    of GDP are based upon the national currency of
    each country, with growth rates adjusted to
    remove the impact of general inflation.
  • Benefit Design and Formularies of Medicare Drug
    Plans A Comparison of 2006 and 2007 Offerings --
    November 2006

5
Rx Drugs Funny?
  • We wanted to find a way to get public attention
    on serious problems drug safety drug costs
  • Fake drug ads with bizarre side effects are
    they different from real drug ads with real side
    effects?

6
How did we come up with the song?
  • We knew some Lounge Lizards
  • Warning funny bands can be raunchy
  • We provided ideas for themes, the band drafted,
    we reviewed
  • We didnt make a lot of edits
  • Important to let funny people be funny
  • Put the wonky stuff on the page, but dont kill
    the creativity
  • Did search for animation companies
  • Picked them based on their work on other topics

7
Animation promotionThe Drugs I Need by the
Austin Lounge Lizards
8
What did we do to make the song successful?
  • The band and the animators did work that only
    they can docome up with a great product for us
    to promote (a 4 5 month process)
  • Four people compiled a list of 200 health and
    general interest blogs, then promoted the song by
    sending individualized email pitches to each
    blogger with followup communications as bloggers
    responded individually.
  • Two people worked for a week on the action pages
    to ensure smooth flow of traffic/action-taking
    opportunities before and after viewing, clear
    simple message and adequate bandwidth for peak
    traffic.
  • One person translated animation graphics into
    other media formats for use by the press, for use
    on our site, for republishing on CD, and other
    ongoing promotion.
  • One person handled creative contracts, request
    for permission to use for other purposes,
    redistribution contracts, email-based paid
    promotion.

9
The results
  • March 1, 2005 we launched the animation/MP3 song
    campaign to spread the word about prescription
    drug reform.
  • Since then, more than 2 million unique views
    and it keeps getting hits.
  • More than 200 blogs linked to it, then it got
    picked up by JibJab
  • Run on the Today Show, two articles in the New
    York Times, lots of ancillary media coverage

10
Does one more funny animationmatter, and how do
you tell?
  • 30 K people emailed Congress to support drug
    safety legislation more than half were new
  • 10K new people opted in to get our email in the
    future 40 of the new opt-ins are already repeat
    action takers
  • More difficult to estimate the effect of 2
    million people downloading
  • People love it, people use it in conferences and
    credit us.

11
So if it was a success,why was it a success?
  • Does getting on the Today Show bring in
    e-activists or produce communications to
    lawmakers?
  • 77 came to us from email solicitation
  • 23 brought from unknown sources including blog
    postings.
  • Is the bigger benefit P.R.?
  • What is the value of buzz?
  • Or is the real benefit of creatives something
    else?

12
Why it worked
  • A bit of luck
  • An unexpected group did something really funny
  • A really talented group of really funny artists
  • An outline, but not a lot of interference with
    their work
  • A whole lot of outreach internet and
    traditional media
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