Kimberly N. Alleyne
Annually, one in three women die from heart disease and stroke. The American Heart Association says 80 percent of those deaths are preventable, and uses a dynamic, ubiquitous public education campaign to spread awareness of this statistic and that heart disease can be prevented with lifestyle choices. Here are five ways the American Heart Association’s National Wear Red Day uses great PR:
1. There is an easy-to-digest public education component. The campaign makes the complex subject of heart disease and makes it simple.
2. The main call to action (CTA) is uber simple: wear red for one day. Everyone has something red in the closet. The other CTAs are worth noting, too, because they are diverse. For example, a Wear Red supporter can donate to the cause, host a Wear Red Day event, or volunteer.
3. Accessible resources. The website has a great bank of resources and tools that visitors can tap to learn more about heart disease, and ways to get involved. Great resources are key to see lasting behavior change beyond the end of a PR campaign.
4. Various engagement options. Not only can campaign supporters get involved by using their social media networks, but the campaign makes it easy to participate by taking stock of one’s heart health by adding exercise, offering free, heart-healthy recipes, and taking a Go Red Heart Check-up. A campaign’s success increases when incorporates behaviors and habits that can be implemented long-term and beyond the life of the campaign.
5. Milestones–Each year, the National Wear Red Day (the first Friday of February) campaign publishes various milestones and achievements. Those milestones add credibility and show the breadth and longevity of the campaign. They also add a level of excitement. Here are a few the AHA notes in the more than 10 years of the National Wear Red Day campaign:
- Nearly 90% have made at least one healthy behavior change.
- More than one-third has lost weight.
- More than 50% have increased their exercise.
- 6 out of 10 have changed their diets.
- More than 40% have checked their cholesterol levels.
- One third has talked with their doctors about developing heart health plans.
- Today, nearly 300 fewer women die from heart disease and stroke each day
- Death in women has decreased by more than 30 percent over the past 10 years.
Congratulations to the American Heart Association for a #Great PR Campaign, and for teaching the nation how to prevent one in three women from dying of heart disease and stroke each year. Learn more about Go Red for Women and National Wear Red Day here. Don’t forget to share the campaign on your social networks, and of course, wear red!