Digital campaign: One day at GOSH

The Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity ran a digital campaign to highlight the work at the children's hospital over 24 hours

Orla, one of the patients featured in the One Day at GOSH video
Orla, one of the patients featured in the One Day at GOSH video

What is it?

One Day at GOSH is a campaign based around a film that was produced in-house and shot in the hospital over a 24-hour period in March. The film was designed to show the stories, challenges and triumphs on any given day and through the night, providing a snapshot of the specialist care given to seriously ill babies, children and young people.

Yasmin Georgiou, head of digital engagement at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity, told Third Sector: "The 24-hour message was central to the campaign and meant that we had to be flexible to the reality of filming in a working hospital. Our in-house team filmed on location at the hospital in one 24-hour time period, capturing pre-scheduled appointments and surgeries as well as the everyday, behind-the-scenes moments that happen across the hospital on any given day."

What was the aim of the campaign?

The campaign served two purposes. The film was an opportunity for the charity to explain how it supports the hospital to provide care, expertise and facilities for seriously ill children, but it was also to help the charity meet its objectives of generating positive engagement: families were encouraged to share stories of their experiences with Great Ormond Street, and hundreds did so through Facebook.

GOSH wanted to trial digital innovations in the campaign and learn from how they performed. This was the first campaign the charity had created that let raw footage speak for itself. Without providing explanation or commentary from "talking heads" in order to show the reality of life at the hospital, it aimed to elicit an emotional response to the content by not shying away from showing sensitive and difficult moments as well as happier ones.

Another new element for the charity was its use of Twitter: for the first time GOSH tweeted on the hour, every hour for the first 24 hours of the campaign, using a variety of photos, shorter clips and gifs from the filming. This was designed to bring the stories to life across all channels with the intention of making people stop and think about how their everyday experiences compared with life in the hospital.

How successful has it been?

Social media has clearly been the driving force behind the campaign. In just five days after the launch on 20 March, the video had been viewed on Facebook more than 466,000 times, drawing 5,000 reactions and generating more than 260 comments. The charity says that, in total, the video has been viewed 473,000 times (as of 5 April 2017), with the content from the wider campaign reaching more than 6.8 million people.

Total reach so far including Facebook reach (2.7 million), Instagram reach (278,000) and Twitter impressions (943,000) is in excess of five million, and since the campaign began there have been 6,000 new Facebook page likes, which GOSH described as a "significant increase" on its average weekly figures.

The Facebook campaign also featured a case study, focusing on the first patient shown in the video, a baby girl, whose story has reached 521,000 people and has now been liked 17,000 times.

Because of the high engagement and reach the campaign attracted, GOSH’s digital team followed up with a summary of the comments and feedback using Storify.

What does the charity say?

Georgiou said the campaign was very different from those the charity had created before.

"This was a digital-first, creative and bold campaign for the charity," she said. "The implementation across platforms using a mixture of film, long-form copy and striking images was successful and created incredible engagement. It has been very powerful to hear from families who fed back to us that we truthfully captured their experiences of life in the hospital.

"In the future we’ll be exploring how we can develop more engaging, content-first campaigns and work these into impactful fundraising campaigns too."

Third Sector verdict

As a high-profile charity that is frequently in the public eye, Great Ormond Street probably needs to be looking for new ways to tell its story that will engage with supporters and attract new ones. Although some of the elements wthin this campaign might not be new to other organisations, they provided new digital avenues for GOSH that worked – with impressive results. The charity stressed One Day was not a fundraising exercise, but this campaign may well provide a boost for future donations.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in
RSS Feed

Third Sector Insight

Sponsored webcasts, surveys and expert reports from Third Sector partners