DonateLife Week
 2012 - 2019

Through its annual awareness campaign, the Organ and Tissue Authority drives up registrations, year-on-year, working with Think HQ to generate quality campaign coverage that reaches a mass Australian audience.

We know that stories are powerful. The stories of people — those who have received an organ transplant, or have lost a family member who has gone on to become a donor — are the most compelling case to demonstrate the importance of registering as an organ and tissue donor. 

Client
Organ and Tissue Authority
Project Category
PR & Media Relations
Project Expertise
Communications planning
Media planning
Media relations
PR & Community engagement
Public relations strategy

The Brief 

When you register as an organ donor, you’re registering to save a life. In Australia, you need to opt-in to make this life-saving gift. 

Through its annual awareness campaign, DonateLife Week, the Organ and Tissue Authority (OTA) drives up registrations, year-on-year, working with Think HQ to generate quality campaign coverage that reaches a mass Australian audience. 


Idea

We know that stories are powerful. The stories of people — those who have received an organ transplant, or have lost a family member who has gone on to become a donor — are the most compelling case to demonstrate the importance of registering as an organ and tissue donor. 

We’ve worked with the OTA since 2012, and while the angles, method and approach have changed year by year, we’ve always known that sharing these stories in the media drives registrations. 

In 2019, our strategic media approach was multi-layered, and utilised a winning combination of compelling case study stories, expert spokespeople, new research findings and a clear call to action.


Outcomes

For DonateLife Week 2019, we developed a comprehensive campaign plan outlining all national media relations activity. 

We worked with the OTA and its state offices to source 40 individual stories to share through the media. 

To complement the case study stories, we worked with expert spokespeople, new research findings and outlined a clear call 
to action.

With a 2019 focus on increasing organ donation rates amongst 16-25 year olds (the demographic with the lowest registration rate) we commissioned attitudinal research to find out how this cohort, as well as the general population, felt about organ and tissue donation.

With the youth audience in mind, we also created a series of branded GIFs and stickers for supporters to use across social media, including Instagram stories and on Facebook. 


2019 results:

  • Tailored pitching to national media outlets led to on message, youth-focused coverage in outlets across the country, including: news.com.au, FOX FM, Triple J (both Hack and Breakfast with Ben and Liam), AAP and more. Other coverage highlights included quality pieces airing on ABC Radio National’s Breakfast program, Sunrise, Studio 10 and The Today Show, plus stories on7news.com.au, nine.com.au, Mamamia, and in New Idea.
  • DonateLife Week appeared on all major national free-to-air TV networks, including ABC News24 and SBS (which translated coverage for in-language radio programs). OTA CEO Lucinda Berry also appeared on Sky News. 
  • We secured more than 30 national media interviews, and worked with DonateLife state agencies to facilitate many more stories in statewide metro and regional media outlets.

The annual DonateLife Week campaign consistently generates more than 1000 media clips, nationally, and Think HQ’s work has played a key role in growing these media outcomes, year on year, since 2012. 

Supporting the theory that media relations activity has a powerful role to play in public awareness and behaviour change campaigns, Australia’s donation figures have increased by more than 60% since 2012 when we first began working with the OTA.

We’re proud of our longstanding relationship with the OTA, and our award-winning work on DonateLife Week. In 2016, our integrated PR campaign took out best Health Campaign (Victoria) at the 2017 PRIA Awards, as well as earning a Mumbrella CommsCon Award nomination in the ‘Government Sponsored Campaign of the Year’ category.