CASE STUDY: PUBLIC HEALTH & WELLNESS

Behavioral Health System Baltimore

DON’T DIE CAMPAIGN: REDUCING HARM AND SPREADING HOPE

The Challenge


Baltimore City has been particularly hard hit by the opioid epidemic—more than 700 people in Baltimore died as a result of overdosing in 2017. Behavioral Health System Baltimore (BHSB) is a nonprofit organization established by Baltimore City to perform the governmental function of managing Baltimore City’s behavioral health system to address emotional health and well-being and to provide services for individuals with substance use and mental health disorders. BHSB works closely with state and local partners – including the Baltimore Health Department and city-based service providers – to address behavioral health issues, such as reducing the number of overdose deaths.

PROJECT SCOPE

Strategic Communication
Creative
Digital Strategies
Messaging & Branding

Our Strategy


Toward the end of 2017, BHSB partnered with The Hatcher Group to expand on the Baltimore City’s Health Department Don’t Die campaign. The original campaign aimed to educate people with substance use disorders about life-saving Naloxone, which can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. They then sought to expand the message to include friends and family of people who have a substance use disorder or are in recovery. Alongside BHSB, we:

  • Developed messaging that addressed two critical needs for people who use opioids – getting Naloxone and getting treatment
  • Conducted a focus group with people in recovery to test and refine messaging and ad imagery to ensure we reached our target audience
  • Developed and executed a citywide advertising campaign with a budget of $185,000 to disseminate our messages through transit ads, a billboard, radio, Pandora (the online music streaming service), and Google AdWords

Our Impact


  • 505,000 impressions on Pandora, targeting Baltimore City residents
  • Google AdWords received 74,400 impressions and resulted in more than 1,400 click-throughs
  • The billboard, strategically placed in a highly visible location in downtown Baltimore, received 157,000 weekly impressions
  • Transit ads received tens of thousands of impressions per day
  • Radio ads had a net reach of over 1.3 million people in the Baltimore area
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