Heidi Hurst, MA is the Director of the Northern Nevada Immunization Coalition (NNIC). She talks to MassMedia about the implementation and success of their 2010-2011 flu vaccination marketing and public relations campaign.
Heidi has more than16 years of experience in nonprofit program management. She joined NNIC in 2007 and has since lead the coalition in fiscal partnerships, strategic planning and project management. Heidi specializes in coalition building and advocacy.
How has your experience been using MassMedia’s services (scope of work, outcomes, etc.)?
Overall it has been great. MassMedia’s response has been really fast, which was important to this campaign. The campaign wouldn’t have worked without it. Also, even though there were people in the Vegas office working on the campaign and people locally in Reno working with us, everything felt seamless and ran smoothly.
Why was it imperative to create a marketing outreach campaign for the influenza vaccination?
We wanted to create something new that hadn’t been seen before. The problem with flu season is that it’s always the same message, delivered in the same way and people stop listening. We wanted to give people the message in a new and fun way.
What elements did this campaign include and were they effective?
We thought the billboards were really effective. We received several comments on them. They were colorful and well placed which made them stand out. The blog was also something we received good feedback on and that was nice since it was something new for us. We also liked partnering with the banks in rural areas. It was a great opportunity for regional outreach and it worked. The rural communities were supportive. From publishing stories in the local paper to handing out collateral, it really helped out.
Describe some of the feedback you’ve received in response to the InFLUence Others: Get Vaccinated campaign?
Our coalition members really liked the campaign, which was important to us. We do an annual strategic planning survey and through this we received really great feedback on the campaign, better than we have on previous campaigns. Our coalition members are not marketing people, so if they saw, liked and responded to the campaign that’s a really good sign. They are a sample of the general public who we also received comments from here and there at events.
Also, the campaign was well branded. I just think the play on the title, tagline, the t-shirts, and everything all came together nicely. The fact that the campaign has won an ADDY Award is a testament to that. We have also submitted the campaign to the National Influenza Vaccine Summit and hope to be hearing back from them soon.
What was your favorite part of the entire campaign?
I thought having people hold the “I Can InFLUence” sign and taking pictures of them was a lot of fun. We posted these pictures on Facebook and they were well received. The Facebook flu shot application was also a great element and I was surprised to see how many were sent, it was a lot! Our Facebook fan base and interaction definitely increased during this campaign. We have never had the opportunity to incorporate social media in that way or to that extent, and it was a lot of fun!
What was the biggest challenge for the campaign and do you think it was overcome?
The biggest challenge was the timeline. I remember thinking when I was writing out the RFP that it would be tough, but everyone at MassMedia really stepped up and did an incredible job with it. We basically had everything designed, done and ready to print within the first week; I have never had that happen before.