Smart cross-media campaign by DPG Media breaks the taboo around grief and loss

03/26/2021

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About

This week’s egtabite showcases an innovative cross-media campaign by the Belgian media company, DPG Media, that addresses a sensitive topic – grief and loss. This topic resonated more than ever due to the Covid19 pandemic and allowed the client, a specialist in funeral assistance and insurance, to break a major taboo – death and saying farewell to a loved one.

The concept

The client, Dela, partnered with DPG Media and all of its channels – radio, TV, print and online – to make the topic of loss a national conversation in Belgium. The campaign was a continuation of the previous two years of collaboration with the client and ran between October and November 2020, ending on All Saints’ Day, a date that their previous campaigns usually centred around.

On TV, the topic was incorporated in a daily soap opera with a character that hesitates to sign his father’s will. The actor then shared his personal experience of loss and bereavement, and reflected on what happened in the TV show in an online article on hln.be (digital version of HLN – the most popular newspaper in Flanders).

On top of that, there were ten additional articles on hln.be addressing the issue of loss, offering condolences and giving advice on how to deal with grief and talk about loss with children.

Belgian influencers and celebrities shared their personal experiences with loss, both online and in print, helping to fuel the conversation. In print, DPG created a supplement to the “Hello Everyone” magazine, calling it “Goodbye Everyone” and featuring open-hearted interviews with celebrities. It also included an editorial piece, called “Heavenly Heroes”, with Raf and Heidi, hosts of an exclusive radio show on the Belgian radio station, Joe. The radio show featured songs by legendary artists that have passed away. To introduce this radio show, Raf and Heidi recorded a special song, the video for which was branded by Dela via banners and logos. A representative from Dela was then interviewed on the radio show where the question of grief was addressed and valuable advice was given to the audience. The partnership was reinforced by classic radio spots and tag-ons (a seven-second message embedded in the editorial content with a short message from Dela) as well as editorial brand integrations by Joe’s DJs.

Campaign video

Results

The client was very happy with the creative cross-media approach and the results it achieved. Overall, more than 4 out of 10 listeners of Joe tuned into the “Heavenly Heroes” programme. After hearing the radio spot, 78% of listeners considered Dela the preferred partner for their funeral (up from 45% before the campaign). Native advertising articles on hln.be generated over 28,000 page views per article.

The campaign had an overall positive impact on Dela’s brand image. Before the campaign, 45% of the audience considered them as reliable funeral experts in Belgium, while after hearing and reading more about it, the number went up to 70%. Listeners associated the brand with words like ‘trustworthy’, ‘warm-hearted’ and ‘reliable’.

Most importantly, the campaign got the audience talking about the important topic of loss. Before the campaign, 33% of the audience had already thought about how they wanted to say goodbye, while after the campaign, 59% said they started to reflect on their funeral.