Cannes Lions

I WILL LISTEN

JWT NEW YORK, New York / NAMI NYC-METRO / 2014

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Case Film

Overview

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Credits

Overview

Description

People affected by mental illness think it's something to hide. Because discussing mental illness is taboo. The stigma is profoundly damaging because it prevents people from getting help.

Previous mental health campaigns aimed to “normalize” the illness. But the real issue is lack of understanding: feeding the stigma. For people to seek help, they have to know others will support them.

Three words can break the stigma: I Will Listen.

Instead of another ad campaign, we turned the biggest social network, Facebook, into the largest support network. By posting a video or Instagram, or tweeting support, you can make a promise to listen. Friends who need help can then send you a message, knowing they won't be judged.

The campaign also extends to the offline world. 41 other non-profits joined the campaign, and student organizations held I Will Listen days at a dozen universities, including Penn State University and the University of Florida.

The campaign trended at #4 nationally on Twitter. It has garnered 350 articles and 300 million media impressions, raised $400,000 and seen positive sentiment rise 92% among participants. Best of all, thousands have promised to listen with an open mind and open heart.

Execution

I Will Listen turned the biggest social network, Facebook, into the world's largest support network. By posting a video or Instagram, or tweeting support, you can make a promise to listen. Friends who need help, or simply someone to talk to, can then message you knowing that they won't be judged. Mariel Hemmingway and other well known advocates helped spread the word. Grass roots participation took off, with thousands of people posting content on their social networks. Many other non-profits joined with us and promoted the campaign. And student organizations at a dozen universities activated the campaign on their campuses.

Outcome

Facebook likes increased 3,000%. More then 350 online and traditional articles, including features in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal earned more than 300 million impressions. We raised more than $400,000 from organizations. It was the #4 trending topic nationally on Twitter. The campaign has been joined by 40 other non-profits, leading employers like Credit Suisse, Liberty Bank, PWC and Deutsche Bank, and student groups at more than a dozen universities. And our goal of breaking the stigma of mental illness, our mental health survey shows a 92% improvement in positive sentiment among those who have participated in the campaign.

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