Bupa: Winter Wellness

The Brief

Bupa Care Services runs an annual Winter Wellness campaign in partnership with the Royal Voluntary Service to emphasise the importance of keeping the elderly communities ‘well’ during winter. From 10th October to 17th November 2013, events to promote wellbeing took place at over 200 care homes across the UK as well as in the community.

Umpf was briefed to help raise awareness of the campaign and most importantly the events in priority Bupa care homes. Our focus was on generating awareness of the events on an individual basis in small hyperlocal communities, as well as talk about the campaign as a whole.

The objectives as outlined by Bupa at the start of the campaign were to:
• Generate media coverage in the regions of priority care homes and in age appropriate titles
• Create 3 million impressions (measured on title circulation)
• Three or more key messages to be included in 75% of coverage
• Generate coverage with 100% positive sentiment
• Achieve a Bupa reference in 100% of coverage

Our Response

The NHS, Age UK and other charities have historically dominated the conversation around keeping elderly communities well over winter. As such, we developed a different and unusual hook, to avoid competing for the same column inches.

We decided to explore the relationship between music and wellbeing to provide a fresh angle with a strong news hook; creating broad media appeal and creating rich content for print, broadcast and online titles. Our multi-stage campaign was thus structured under the theme of music and the benefits it can bring to the lives of the elderly.

To provide our initial news hook, we conducted research among 2,000 70-90 year olds to find out which song made them feel the greatest sense of wellbeing when they listened to it.

We then worked with a music scientist, Professor Grenville Hancox (of the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health) to determine the ‘formula’ for the perfect feel-good song.

The majority of participants named Louis Armstrong’s ‘What a Wonderful World’ as their top feel-good track, so we enlisted the help of UK’s only Louis Armstrong lookalike and soundalike, Shenton Dixon, to put on Louis Armstrong tribute gigs for elderly communities.

We selected five care homes, all in Bupa Care Services priority areas, to hold the special events and invited media. This provided interview, photo and audio content for media and thus generated coverage in each of our priority regions ahead of Winter Wellness Week. In areas where we hadn’t held events, we used the research findings and images and positioned them as a curtain raiser story for the upcoming local Winter Wellness series of events arranged by Bupa and RVS.

Our second wave of activity was around the individual activities of the 200 Bupa Care homes; selling in tailored press releases to the local media across the country for each event. For this section of the campaign, the Umpf team was divided into Bupa Care Service regions who worked to confirm event information with individual care homes and create tailored press releases which matched (sometimes multiple) care homes to local media. We then worked to provide images, quotes and press visits to care homes during Winter Wellness Week. Over the course of the week we contacted over hundreds of titles on behalf of 204 care homes.


Bupa Winter Wellness 2 440 During the course of the campaign, we achieved over 130 individual pieces of media coverage (generating impressions of 5,504,073) with 80% of this coverage containing three key messages or more.

All coverage included Bupa branding and achieved 100% positive sentiment across traditional media and social. 12 pieces of local radio broadcast coverage were achieved.

In addition, of all media coverage we generated for the Winter Wellness campaign, 37% mentioned the phone number for further enquires and 440, 3258 people were exposed to three or more of Bupa’s key messages.

Bupa Winter Wellness 1 440

 Bupa Winter Wellness Shenton Kent 440

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