The American Cancer Society is a nationwide, community-based, voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem. Through research, education, advocacy, and service, it strives to prevent cancer, save lives, and diminish the suffering of those who are battling cancer. In 1985, the American Cancer Society created Relay for Life, an event that motivates the community to take an active part in the fight against cancer. Participants raise money to fund cancer research and, more importantly, further cancer prevention.
The American Cancer Society was in need of a revamped marketing campaign to engage more collegiate participants in the annual Relay for Life event This fall, the Saint Joseph’s University chapter of the organization needed assistance with designing compelling promotional materials for its annual Fall Kickoff and Relay for Life. The goal of the video would be to drive students to join a team for April’s Relay for Life, as well as encourage involvement from the campus community and beyond.
For the Fall Kickoff poster, we knew we had to grab the viewer with an eye-catching graphic that would depict the energizing atmosphere of the event. Pumpkin pinatas were one of the main attractions of this year’s Kickoff, so we wanted to incorporate that unique point into our design.
While studying other health-related nonprofits’ online presences, we discovered that many organizations promote themselves or their events through social media; in particular, these nonprofits use emotionally-charged content to engage their audience. People want to feel as though they have a personal connection to the cause or organization that is being promoted.
As followers of social media ourselves, our group has also noticed that shareable video content has become incredibly popular on social media lately. More and more, brands are posting short viral videos that capture the attention of the audience while providing them with key information.
We decided that video would be the best medium to convey the range of emotions that participants experience during Relay for Life, as well as the energy of the event. We could also present statistics about cancer and details about the event in a way that the viewer would both understand and remember easily.
RESULTS / ASPIRATIONS
Our promotions for Fall Kickoff included a sharable social media flyer and posters that were distributed around campus in high-traffic locations. Heightening awareness about Fall Kickoff led to a successful event that was not only entertaining, but it also encouraged members of the St. Joseph’s community to register for the 2016 Relay for Life.
With our promotional video, we’re aiming to excite students about the event by giving them a visual representation of the spirit of Relay. By posting and sharing the video on social media sites, our hope is that it will circulate throughout students’ online feeds and catch their attention enough for them to share it, too. This, ideally, will lead to a greater number of participants than in previous years. Our aim is to encourage more students — particularly those who are not necessarily affiliated with specific organizations on campus, such as the orientation team or Greek life — to create teams with their friends for the 2016 Relay for Life.