#BellLetsTalk…… about Mental Health!

asmartinez    May 17, 2017

Bell Canada is Canada’s largest communications company, providing telecommunication services and solutions to consumers, businesses and government customers.  Services provided include wireless, Internet, TV, Home Phone and broad band communications. Bell Canada is one of the main assets of the conglomerate BCE Bell Canada Enterprises.

In 2010, Bell Canada, launched its first annual Bell Let’s Talk Day to raise awareness for Mental Health.  The goal of this campaign was to begin a new conversation about mental illness at a time where it was not talked about. Millions of Canadians, celebrities and athletes began to engage in the conversation, discussing their experiences and offering support and hope for those struggling. Leading personalities of this cause include Clara Hughes, Howie Mandel and Michael Landsberg just to name a few.  In addition to the conversation, Bell Canada has also made a pledge to invest an unprecedented $50 million in this multi-year campaign.

What makes this initiative stand apart from other campaigns is its use of social media.  In 2017, Bell Let’s Talk day was on January 25.  Bell Canada committed to contribute 5 cents towards mental health programs for each of these interactions on Bell Let’s Talk day at no extra charge to participants.

  • Every text message, mobile and long distance call made by Bell Canada customers
  • Twitter: Every tweet using #BellLetsTalk
  • Facebook: Every view of the Bell Let’s Talk Day video on Facebook.com/BellletsTalk
  • Instagram: Every Post using #Bell Let’s talk geofilter.

The hashtag the #BellLetsTalk was in Twitter’s annual top 10 list. To date the campaign has been very successful with 729,065,654 interactions and Bell Canada committing $6,585,250 to mental health in 2017.

Employee Involvement

Although #BellLetsTalk is a multi-national campaign engaging public awareness on mental health, it ALL starts at home.  In my interview with Bryan, Analyst at Bell, he explains that he and his colleagues are actively encouraged by Bell Canada management to use social media and all other interactions to participate in the campaign.  They are given reminders daily and email notifications a week leading up to the Bell Let’s Talk day to participate. In addition, meet and greets with celebrities like Clara Hughes and Howie Mendel over the years have been scheduled to motivate participation.  There is also a dedicated section on their internal website.  Bryan admits that participation is “pretty motivating”. By participating in Bell Let’s Talk Day, it allows him to have fun texting and interacting with people he doesn’t normally chat with knowing that his participation in making a difference through the contributions of his company.   In his interactions with his network he identifies the ways that they too can participate through social media so they can also contribute to the cause.  It is apparent that the success of the campaign is not only due to the participation by the public but also by the participation by the employees of Bell Canada through the use of social media.

Lessons for Others

The #BellLetsTalk campaign is a successful example of how Bell has used social media to raise awareness of a crucial health issue and linking these interactions with monetary contributions.  The contributions are then put back into the community and into their Mental Health programs for which the public and their own employees can benefit.  Employees, through their social media involvement in the campaign benefit from the mental health training and programs Bell Canada provides.  Employees are motivated knowing that their company invests in their health.

“Don’t use Social media to impress people; use it to impact people” – DaveWillis.org

Organization: http://letstalk.bell.ca/en/
Industry: Telecommunications
Name of Organization Contact: Bryan, Analyst at Bell Canada

Authored by: amartinez

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


Bell Let’s Talk Home Page. (2017). Bell Let’s Talk. Retrieved May 13, 2017, from http://letstalk.bell.ca/en/bell-lets-talk-day.

Bell Canada Staff. (2016, December 21). Bell Let’s Talk Day 2017 is January 25! – Bellletstalk.com. Bell Canada. Retrieved May 13, 2017, from http://medias.letstalk.bell.ca/news/20161221-bltd-2017-campaign/20161221-bltd-2017-campaign-en.pdf.

Bell Canada Staff. (2015, September). The First 5 Years. – Bellletstalk.com. Bell Canada. Retrieved May 13, 2017, from http://letstalk.bell.ca/letstalkprogressreport.

Peterson, Jennifer. (2017, January 25). Bell aims to “walk the walk’ during annual mental-health campaign. Benefits Canada. Retrieved May 13, 2017, from http://www.benefitscanada.com/benefits/health-wellness/bell-canada-aims-to-walk-the-walk-during-annual-mental-health-campaign-92964.