Take a couple minutes for diabetes

Think you're too busy to test your risk? The Canadian Diabetes Association calls you out.

The rate of type 2 diabetes has increased dramatically over the last two decades, giving Canada the highest rate for the disease among developed countries. To combat this and the toll that it puts on our health care system, the Canadian Diabetes Association has undertaken a campaign inciting people to take an online test to assess if they’re at risk, even if they don’t think they have the time.

“The campaign lives online, and most of the time online is spent with fleeting amusements,” says Pat Pirisi, CCO at Public, which led the campaign. “The irony is that even though everybody is talking about how busy they are, they always have time to be on Facebook or YouTube or reading something.”

To really drive home that point, Public released creative targeted to YouTube and other social networks in October. The pre-roll takes on themes of the viral videos people might already be watching online, like people flying away in balloon chairs, “failing” at household chores and the infamous honey badger, to tell them that, if they have the time to watch that, they have the time to take the test.

In addition to pre-roll, the videos were also targeted through Facebook and Google Display ads and disguised as “click-bait” style posts.

Earlier this fall, Public released a spot called “Hey,” which showed people who, despite their claims about how busy they are, can surely find two minutes for something as important as finding out if they’re at risk for developing diabetes.

“We had a two-wave approach because we knew a September to November campaign could get stale,” says Sachin Bhalla, account director at Public. “The first set was really a way to take lessons from how people were interacting with it on platforms like Facebook and see when the drop [in engagement] came, which was the perfect time to release the more ‘click-bait’ style posts.”

The broader campaign features static social ads and OOH in transit, airports and doctors offices, all playing on the idea of having enough time to take the test. The campaign, which has already exceeded its goal of getting 120,000 people to take the test, runs until the end of November.

“We have this nefarious trap to trick people into a click-through, but those kinds of numbers aren’t important when what represents a conversion on a campaign is someone taking and finishing the test,” Pirisi says. “That moment of targeting someone who’d realize they’d been busted really tied the message of the campaign to what we were trying to get them to do.”