As Cardiff’s local hospice, City Hospice provides home-based specialist palliative care to hundreds of people who are living with terminal illness and life limiting conditions. The charity also provides essential counselling and bereavement support for the families of their patients.
During the pandemic, City Hospice recognised how much harder grieving has been due to restrictions on funeral attendance and other measures. Many people had not been able to celebrate their loved ones how they wanted to and may be holding onto grief until they could come together.
As restrictions gradually eased, the charity had the opportunity to provide the public with a means to celebrate life and remember loved ones by creating Forever Flowers. Working with City Hospice from the early planning stages, Effective created an integrated public relations and social media campaign to share family stories, information about the display at Cardiff Castle and generate sales.
To start, we placed advertorial content on Wales Online to coincide with the launch date of the campaign. The agreed package also saw the launch press release feature on In Your Area, South Wales Echo and as a boosted post on Wales Online’s Facebook page.
We worked closely with City Hospice to draft and issue press releases on the launch, milestones during the campaign and the display at Cardiff Castle, as well as sensitively writing and issuing patient, family and community stories. Building upon an established, good relationship with regional newspaper South Wales Echo, releases and case studies were initially issued to them as exclusive content before issuing to wider local media.
In the lead up to the display we added the event details to listings site and arranged for ITV Wales to film during the opening days of the event at Cardiff Castle for their early evening news programme.
We also devised and scheduled a social media campaign for each story for the charity’s Facebook and Twitter accounts to engage with supporters.
The campaign reached over 186 million people, achieving 90 pieces of coverage including event listings, print, online and broadcast media.
Over 1400 limited edition flowers were purchased, raising over £40,000 for City Hospice. The success of the campaign has seen Forever Flowers return in 2022 with a new flower, a sunflower, with Effective leading the PR and social media content once again.