Marketing Mental Health: influencers & agencies

On 4th April, CIM Wales hosted another fascinating Marketing Bitesize to talk all things influencers, client – agency relationships and social media.

In sport, a red card usually signals bad behaviour, but in 2017 Legal & General used it as a metaphor in their award-winning ‘Not a Red Card’ campaign.

Speaking at the Eagle Lab in Cardiff, Michael Took, a Social Media Consultant for Legal & General and Bryn Foweather, Head of Social Media at Punch Communications, provided a first-hand insight into how they drew on the values and appeal of sport to raise awareness around the accessibility and acceptability of discussing mental health in the workplace.

Bryn explained how working with high-profile sports personalities helped them to destigmatise mental health issues and increase the campaign’s reach:

“Celebrities can help as they already have audiences defined and people look up to them. We wanted people to think ‘if it could happen to them, it could happen to me too’.”

In relation to getting buy-in and managing influencer relationships, their top tips were:

  1. Focus on authenticity – their most popular video was Ricky Hatton in his gym.
  2. Provide as much detail as possible on the content the influencer is going to create –some are good at creating content, others are less a creator more an ambassador.
  3. Include length and format, and how the influencer is expected to promote it. Always seek more usage and rights to content, for example Twitter recommend up to 15-20 tweets… a day!
  4. Be sure to establish guidelines regarding use and exclusivity.
  5. Bring the influencer to face-to-face meetings to reach a more impactful output and ensure brand and influencer alignment – things can get lost in translation.

Everybody should get something out of an influencer marketing program: the audience, the influencer and the brand.

They then took delegates through an honest analysis of some of the campaign’s videos, sharing the lessons they took to improve them.

Video 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zv2jO1Usig featured Nigel Owens, but the video content was too long and he was introduced too late, which meant that users dropped off.

Video 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Updd5MgR0g featured gold medal winning hockey players Kate and Helen Richardson-Walsh tackling gossiping co-workers.  As with the first video, the two hero characters were introduced too late on, although the use of two influencers did help to increase the social reach.

Video 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ax2qDe85AM featured Gabby Logan and Robbie Savage who were introduced earlier on this time. The sporting and workplace link was better executed and the use of two influencers helped to increase social reach.

Video 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsjHCi_eVME featured former rugby union world champion Will Greenwood. There was an intensity to the narrative on this video and it introduced more actionable elements that kept the viewer locked in.

Video 5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nxJ2saFDMs featured double Olympic Gold Medallist Lizzy Arnold OBE and was another strong narrative with actionable takeaways in a good timeframe (under a minute) The fun element helped to entertain as well as inform the audience.

Mike and Bryn then provided a checklist for producing successful video content:

  1. Is there a strong creative hook present?
  2. Is the core message clear without sound? And attention grabbing with sound on?
  3. Is the asset framed for mobile as a square or vertical ratio?
  4. Do the creatives contain branding in the first 3 seconds?
  5. Do the creatives contain the key message of the campaign in the first 3 seconds?
  6. Are there at least 3 creative variations to test?
  7. Consider how the end user is going to consume the content is it on-the-go, leaning back or leaning forward and edit the video content accordingly
  8. Measure the drop off points and use these to create new video content

Speaking on the creative side of things, Mike admitted you can have too many people involved in the process: “Everyone has their own preferences, but it doesn’t mean they’re best placed to choose. You have to go back to the viewer and consider how they will consume it; everything else is secondary.”

As well as the social video campaign, Legal & General ran an event engaging over 150 business leaders and using live social media to bring the event to life and reach more people. Mike and Bryn gave their top tips on how to make the most of social at a live event:

  1. Try and take the event to the outside audience – show them what they are missing. If people can’t be there, what would they like to see/ hear about?
  2. Use social screens that encourage engagement with the hashtag at the event
  3. Have something visual for a ‘social moment’ such as backdrop so people can upload images of themselves at the event
  4. Mention the event and your hashtag in all descriptions, press releases and comms
  5. Involve speakers in content creation – short form, a quote and tweet, or long form a wrap-up video, or long-form article
  6. Share pictures at the event with quote overlays
  7. Don’t take the Wi-fi for granted! It costs £200-300 to get a Wifi boost if you want to maximise live social value

In terms of what lies in store for Phase 3 of the Not a Red Card campaign, Mike said the biggest focus will be on how to include and bring people with mental health issues back into the workplace. He emphasised the importance of ROI, explaining how the fact the campaign reached over 7 million people and resulted in 250 pieces of national press coverage helped to justify repeat investment.

Finally, asked about the secret to a good agency-client relationship, Bryn said: “If something’s not working you’ve got to call it out. If it’s your fault, admit it. Be transparent. Deliver when you say you’re going to deliver. Be yourself and keep a sense of humour.’

Right on cue, Mike added: ‘Be open to change – agencies should always give you 3 options. If they don’t, find a new agency.’

The full slide deck is available here.

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