CPR Makes You Undead

Siddiqi    November 4, 2015

Title: CPR Makes You Undead



Organisation Name: Heart & Stroke Foundation

Industry: Health; Not-For-Profit

Name of Contacts: Ketan Manohar (Copywriter of “The Undeading” Public Service Announcement); Eddy Nason, Ontario SPOR Support Unit

Web References: CPR History; CPR Tweak; Heart & Stroke Foundation; Ketan Manohar; Naeem Walji; Agency 59; Viral Video; British Heart Foundation; Vinnie Jones; Hard and Fast PSA; HSF Press Release; Canada’s Wonderland; Pop Culture Tie-in; 5,020 Trained; @TheUndeading; TheUndeading.ca; Canadian Marketing Association; Media Innovation Awards; W3 Awards

Social Media Metrics and The Heart & Stroke Foundation

Where there is life, there is also death. This is an absolute fact! Leaving aside the complexity of spirit, faith, and morality, we curious humans have not figured out how to live forever. Health science works tirelessly to solve all kinds of problems associated with the human body. More often than not, the intention behind the solutions is to cure or to prolong life long enough to cure. Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is exactly this! Prolong the life of someone when their heart has stopped. The modern method of CPR was fully endorsed by the medical community in the 1960’s. 1437607756709Of course prior to the 60’s there were many methods of resuscitation though they were the medical communities domain. The methods were quite similar to modern CPR. Once CPR was endorsed by the medical establishment, emergency services began using CPR and the general public was able to take courses and learn.

Originally, CPR required people to remember and execute the ABC’s of CPR. A = Airways are clear (if not, swish your hand through the patient’s mouth and adjust the head); B = Breaths (provide 2 breaths mouth to mouth); C = Circulation (provide chest compressions in order to artificially circulate blood). In 2010, CPR was given a tweak. The ABC’s were reordered to the CAB’s. There were many reasons for the change; however most prominent is that many people are apprehensive performing mouth to mouth on strangers. This apprehension often results in complete inaction and the life prolonging technique of compression is not performed. So by switching around the letters, the emphasis was placed on circulation. Even without clear airways and breaths, chest compressions can buy time.

What appears as a simple reordering of letters, is in actuality a massive shift in thinking and requires a public education campaign. This is where the Heart & Stroke Foundation comes into the picture. In 2012, the Heart & Stroke Foundation decided to put together a public service announcement to teach people the basics of CPR. The public service announcement (PSA) was dreamed up by the talented Ketan Manohar and Naeem Walji during their tenure at Agency 59. The Heart & Stroke Foundation approached Agency 59  to create a viral video. In the heavily digital world that we live in, many companies and organisations desire viral videos because they demonstrate a far reach and are cool; however, it is one thing to want a viral video and a whole other thing to actually create a viral video.

In speaking with Ketan Manohar, he mentioned that the Heart & Stroke Foundation wanted to replicate the success of the #hardandfast HardAndFastcampaign put out by the British Heart Foundation. The purpose of the campaign was to educate the public about the change to CPR. The British Heart Foundation employed actor Vinnie Jones to demonstrate CPR in an amusing and informative PSA which can be viewed here. The video generated lots of views and was simple enough that people could understand the change. Not to mention that it had a famous person lending clout to the message.

With the dual directives of replication and viral video, Manohar and Walji set out to create a “strictly content driven PSA and campaign.” There would be no famous person lending clout to the message. The message would be the focus! The focus would include zombies. And so “The Undeading” campaign was created.

On October 4, 2012, the campaign was launched to a crowd of people gathered in Yonge Dundas Square. The aim of the campaign was awareness and the key demographic that was being targeted was young people aged 15-30 years old. Given that it was targeted to a youthful cohort, the PSA was launched and shared through Youtube and a number of social networking sites. The press release from the day reveals the thinking behind the campaign and the many components which include a “survivalist” social media campaign with stories, video and pictures driving survivors to the safe zone (Canada’s Wonderland CPR training) as zombies take over Toronto.

Pretty brilliant if you ask me. Zombie apocalypse to save people’s lives = pop-culture tie-in of 2012!

Now let’s examine the metrics a bit:

  • 1,600,085 Youtube views of The Undeading PSA
  • 5,020 People trained at Canada’s Wonderland event

Manohar provided me with a list of the awards and accolades that The Undeading received:

Canadian Marketing Association Awards
December 2013
Digital / Gold
Community Engagement / Gold
Integrated / Bronze
Advertising / Bronze

Media Innovation Awards
November 2013
Best in Integrated / Gold
Branded Content / Gold
Best in Charities, Health, Safety, Public Awareness / Silver

W3 Awards
September 2013
Integrated Campaign Health / Best in Show
Online / Gold
Visual Effects / Gold
Branded Content / Gold

2013 ADCC / Merit (Digital Integrated Campaign)
2013 Marketing Awards / Craft, Public Service Branded
2013 Applied Arts Awards / Complete Advertising Program, Branded Content
2013 Best Ads on TV
2012 Strategy / Pop Culture Tie-in of the Year
2012 Adweek / Freakiest Ads of 2012
2012 Huffington Post / Best Canadian Commercials
2012 Creativity / Top 5 Most Creative
2012 IHaveAnIdea / Top 10

Alongside all of the above metrics, I thought it important to examine the health metrics a bit:

  • As many as 40,000 cardiac arrests a year in Canada
  • As many as 85% of cardiac arrests occur in public settings or private homes
  • When CPR is performed (even poorly) there is a 24% chance of surviving

To discuss these metrics, I interviewed Eddy Nason, Assistant Director at Ontario Strategy for Patient Oriented Research (SPOR) Support Unit regarding the Undeading PSA. Nason is an expert of research and evaluation. Here’s what he had to say.

The Undeading campaign was meant to educate the general population of the change. It was also meant to train a whole bunch of people which really is meant to increase the bystander CPR rates. So it was fascinating to learn that there is no standardized way to track bystander CPR rates. For example, when a person goes into cardiac arrest and a bystander performs CPR, eventually the patient will make it to a hospital; however, no one is quantitatively capturing the data of whether bystander CPR was performed. Perhaps The-Undeading-3this is a project idea for the medical establishment. Seems a shame there isn’t a tiny check box on an intake form.

Also interesting to note is the notion of alt-metrics trending in health research and evaluation. Everyone is getting into the use of social media.

Lessons for Others:

Be Bold — The Heart & Stroke Foundation with the creatives from Agency 59 took a bold and successful risk in creating a polished PSA that was connected to the larger purpose of breaking a world record (training at Canada’s Wonderland). When thinking about world records and other grand ideas, boldness is needed to generate strong metrics.

Create Hype — Nowadays companies can buy retweets; however, the Heart & Stroke Foundation created organic buzz through thoughtful partnerships with the Toronto Zombie Walk and Canada’s Wonderland. When you partner thoughtfully, your reach immediately increases to the audience of your partners. This impacts your metrics heavily.

Balance Your Campaign Metrics — Not only your social media outcome metrics but also your extension into other media and your ultimate campaign goals.

Know Your Audience — If you don’t understand your audience you won’t be able to reach them. The Undeading is aimed at 15-30 year olds. To begin with, this group uses social media heavily so a print campaign in a newspaper would not have made sense. Launching an education campaign with this audience required a social media approach with a theme that was relevant.

Submitted By: Saara Siddiqi, University of Waterloo

To contact the author of this entry please email at: saara.siddiqi@gmail.com

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Programme Director, Social Media for Business Performance.