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The Spirit of Radio

The Spirit of Radio

Danielle Smith

Danielle Smith

September 16, 2019

Havas Dublin puts the power of radio to use for mental health solutions.

"That relationship between radio and listeners is part of what makes radio the most intimate medium."

What started as a Cannes Young Lions-winning brief, went from hypothetical to a fully-realized campaign with Havas Dublin’s latest work for Ireland’s Crisis Text Line.

Senior Account Executive Simon Traynor, Creative Director Adrian Fitz-Simon, and Copywriter Stephen Kelly share the story behind the power of radio in Ireland, and how the team used it to support mental health developments within the country, and how it furthers a campaign created by Young Lions entrants from Havas Media.

 

How did this campaign come to be? What was the ask from the client?

Crisis Text Line has only been operating in Ireland since early this summer, with the primary goal of recruiting volunteers. Crisis Text Line partnered with Choose Radio for the brief and, from there, we developed our winning pitch ‘What Keeps Me Up At Night’ campaign. 

What was the key insight that drove this campaign?

It was very tempting to lean on the stories of people who contact the service, given that they’re so naturally moving. But the lightbulb moment came when we realized we needed to be strict about ensuring that our focus remains on volunteer recruitment, with making the service known to potential users being a later step. 

Any interesting stories to tell from the process of creating and launching this campaign?

We were really lucky to work with the excellent team at Raygun for the production of the ad. They gave us more time than we’d usually have and were really helpful with casting. We cast non-traditionally, reaching out to contacts and testing dozens of voices to find one that was natural and unstudied, and could convey the empathy we desired to communicate the message.

Why do you think the impact of radio is so high in Ireland?

Simply put: Listenership is huge. Radio has remained phenomenally popular here, with up to 85% of adults listening daily. It’s difficult to pinpoint a single reason, but Irish people have always been extremely loyal to the radio shows and personalities we love. That relationship between radio and listeners is part of what makes radio the most intimate medium. That said, the impact is never a given and the onus is on us to make sure that the quality of our radio advertising is on a par with that of our radio broadcasting.

"With over 100 million messages answered to date, there’s no doubt it’s a service people have been waiting for."

Tell us about the Crisis Text Line and why this was created as a free 24/7 service.

Crisis Text Line was founded in the US in 2013 by Nancy Lublin, where it has been primarily—but not exclusively—used by teenagers. Texting offers a degree of discretion that a traditional helpline service might lack, offering people in crisis who may not be comfortable with or capable of speaking over the phone a chance to seek help. With over 100 million messages answered to date, there’s no doubt it’s a service people have been waiting for. 

Do you think services like this are an inevitable part of the future? How will they evolve using AI and other technology?

Crisis Text Line uses AI to analyze users’ messages for keywords that indicate the severity of the situation a texter is in. This works to match them up with a trained crisis counselor appropriate to their situation.

What’s really interesting about this is that Crisis Text Line uses AI as a bridge to human interaction. They use AI in an incredible way, but fundamentally its use revolves around connecting one person to another—something AI can facilitate but never replace. To us, that’s the sweet spot—when tech use can go almost unnoticed while enhancing our ability to communicate with each other.

What has been the reaction to this campaign from the client and from listeners across Ireland?

The reaction to this campaign has been massive, with a huge increase in traffic to the website and more volunteer applications than we originally hoped to deliver for the client. A lot of the detailed data is still coming in. But everyone really pulled together to make a meaningful difference on this campaign and it paid off, both for ourselves and Crisis Text Line Ireland.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about this campaign?

This is just the beginning for Crisis Text Line Ireland. We’re extremely excited by the prospect of continuing to work with their team as they progress to a full launch in the months to come.

"That relationship between radio and listeners is part of what makes radio the most intimate medium."

What started as a Cannes Young Lions-winning brief, went from hypothetical to a fully-realized campaign with Havas Dublin’s latest work for Ireland’s Crisis Text Line.

Senior Account Executive Simon Traynor, Creative Director Adrian Fitz-Simon, and Copywriter Stephen Kelly share the story behind the power of radio in Ireland, and how the team used it to support mental health developments within the country, and how it furthers a campaign created by Young Lions entrants from Havas Media.

 

How did this campaign come to be? What was the ask from the client?

Crisis Text Line has only been operating in Ireland since early this summer, with the primary goal of recruiting volunteers. Crisis Text Line partnered with Choose Radio for the brief and, from there, we developed our winning pitch ‘What Keeps Me Up At Night’ campaign. 

What was the key insight that drove this campaign?

It was very tempting to lean on the stories of people who contact the service, given that they’re so naturally moving. But the lightbulb moment came when we realized we needed to be strict about ensuring that our focus remains on volunteer recruitment, with making the service known to potential users being a later step. 

Any interesting stories to tell from the process of creating and launching this campaign?

We were really lucky to work with the excellent team at Raygun for the production of the ad. They gave us more time than we’d usually have and were really helpful with casting. We cast non-traditionally, reaching out to contacts and testing dozens of voices to find one that was natural and unstudied, and could convey the empathy we desired to communicate the message.

Why do you think the impact of radio is so high in Ireland?

Simply put: Listenership is huge. Radio has remained phenomenally popular here, with up to 85% of adults listening daily. It’s difficult to pinpoint a single reason, but Irish people have always been extremely loyal to the radio shows and personalities we love. That relationship between radio and listeners is part of what makes radio the most intimate medium. That said, the impact is never a given and the onus is on us to make sure that the quality of our radio advertising is on a par with that of our radio broadcasting.

"With over 100 million messages answered to date, there’s no doubt it’s a service people have been waiting for."

Tell us about the Crisis Text Line and why this was created as a free 24/7 service.

Crisis Text Line was founded in the US in 2013 by Nancy Lublin, where it has been primarily—but not exclusively—used by teenagers. Texting offers a degree of discretion that a traditional helpline service might lack, offering people in crisis who may not be comfortable with or capable of speaking over the phone a chance to seek help. With over 100 million messages answered to date, there’s no doubt it’s a service people have been waiting for. 

Do you think services like this are an inevitable part of the future? How will they evolve using AI and other technology?

Crisis Text Line uses AI to analyze users’ messages for keywords that indicate the severity of the situation a texter is in. This works to match them up with a trained crisis counselor appropriate to their situation.

What’s really interesting about this is that Crisis Text Line uses AI as a bridge to human interaction. They use AI in an incredible way, but fundamentally its use revolves around connecting one person to another—something AI can facilitate but never replace. To us, that’s the sweet spot—when tech use can go almost unnoticed while enhancing our ability to communicate with each other.

What has been the reaction to this campaign from the client and from listeners across Ireland?

The reaction to this campaign has been massive, with a huge increase in traffic to the website and more volunteer applications than we originally hoped to deliver for the client. A lot of the detailed data is still coming in. But everyone really pulled together to make a meaningful difference on this campaign and it paid off, both for ourselves and Crisis Text Line Ireland.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about this campaign?

This is just the beginning for Crisis Text Line Ireland. We’re extremely excited by the prospect of continuing to work with their team as they progress to a full launch in the months to come.

Danielle Smith is the Communications Manager of Havas Group. She’s believes every meal can be tacos if you have tortillas and the heart to try.

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