2018 Brand Experience & Activation


Category A03. Healthcare
Name Company Position
Shaheed Peera Publicis LifeBrands Executive Creative Director
Khalid Latif Publicis LifeBrands Associate Creative Director
Jonathan Webb Publicis LifeBrands Art Director
Paul Cocksedge Paul Cocksedge Studio Design Director
Dimuthu Jayawardana Publicis LifeBrands Senior Planner
Marionne Lugay Publicis LifeBrands Account Director
Nina Tsalapatanis Publicis LifeBrands Account Director
Katie McMorran Publicis LifeBrands Business Unit Director
Mark Cocksedge Paul Cocksedge Studio Photographer

Why is this work relevant for Brand Experience & Activation ?

This work is relevant because it gives people a deeply moving experience of the fight against blood cancer - they can walk amongst the actual number of people diagnosed with the disease every day and read their stories of hope. We think the best way to engage the public, particularly when it comes to matters of personal health, is through memorable experiences. And we thought if people could stand amongst the stories of 104 people with blood cancer, we would surely see a response. We did.


Public awareness and understanding of blood cancer is shockingly low despite it being the 3rd biggest cancer killer in the UK. There are many statistics associated with the disease: 136 different types, 104 people diagnosed every day, one person diagnosed every 14 minutes. In fact, blood cancer kills more people than breast or prostate cancer every year, yet most of us don’t know much about it and wouldn’t know what symptoms to look for. Our challenge was to get people in the UK talking about blood cancer like never before, and raise awareness of its signs and symptoms.

Describe the creative idea

Health and wellness, particularly anything communicated by a pharma company to the public, is a challenging, highly regulated space. Messaging must be carefully considered, balanced and contain lots of information. Our idea, a relevant, impactful public installation, is testament to the power of clear, simple messaging; something often underestimated in healthcare communications. On its surface, our public awareness installation communicated one profound piece of information – 104 people are diagnosed with blood cancer every day in the UK. By creating an experience where passers-by could metaphorically stand amongst those with the disease, this key message was hard to miss. Overall, the campaign and installation raised awareness from two separate and sometimes counterintuitive directions: humanising the different elements of a blood cancer diagnosis using emotional patient experiences, while employing facts and statistics on a real-life scale to gain social media traction and shareability.

Describe the strategy

The target audience for this piece was the general public, which includes patients and healthcare professionals alike. Public awareness and understanding of blood cancer is shockingly low despite it being the 3rd biggest cancer killer in the UK. Raising awareness of its signs and symptoms is beneficial to everyone. Our approach was grounded in the insight that people are less likely to remember important facts (like signs and symptoms of blood cancer, how common it can be, etc) if they're presented in a leaflet. However, they're more likely to remember real stories and experiences. That's why we decided to create a high-profile, public installation and partner with a renowned designer. We were going for a unique, impactful and creative way to highlight a simple fact, as well as drive people to understand the signs and symptoms of a disease. A disease that's manageable if caught early enough.

Describe the execution

Together with a high-profile designer, we created a striking typographical forest of 104 names (our insight: 104 people are diagnosed with blood cancer every day in the UK). Made from reinforced polystyrene and steel, each represented a real patient currently living with blood cancer. Every sculpture was perfectly sized to match the height of the person they symbolised. The arrangement reflected the patterns that occur when people gather in crowds, and a recurring typeface intended to emphasise their shared experiences. The installation was designed to be arresting, intriguing, shocking and hopeful. On closer inspection, people found that every name had a real story to tell. Plaques on each name told stories of determination, hope and success. Two separate structures detailed the signs and symptoms of blood cancer and directed people to a website. They stood in Paternoster Square outside St Paul’s Cathedral in London for 30 days.

List the results

- 292 million people reached online and in press - 1.2 million visitors to the exhibition - 1 million video views on the BBC - 500% increase in coverage from Blood Cancer Awareness week 2016 - 9 patient support groups involved - 1 article in The Lancet, one of the world's oldest, most prestigious medical journals - In January 2018, the campaign and installation was cited as an example of best practise in the first report of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer - In September 2018, during Prime Minister’s Questions, Henry Smith MP called on UK Prime Minister Teresa May to make blood cancer visible - The work was also presented at the Global Design Forum at the V&A Museum during London Design Week 2017