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Special Project

Special Project
From the 14th Annual Shorty Awards

Creating a Healthier Asia

Entered in Branded Series, Integrated Campaign, Long Form Video, Multi-Platform Campaign, Pharma & Healthcare, Storytelling


The Asia-Pacific region rallied together with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to eradicate hepatitis by 2030, but we are not hitting the mark. Each year an estimated 140,000 people in the Western Pacific region, which includes parts of Asia, are infected with the virus, yet, the WHO suggests that only 10 per cent of individuals infected with hepatitis B are aware that they have it.

The WHO goal of eliminating hepatitis by 2030 is only eight years away. Stumbling blocks like low awareness in communities and stigma are slowing our progress. A study conducted by Gilead Sciences (Gilead) found that the knowledge gap on how viral hepatitis is transmitted and diagnosed is glaringly huge. For example, Korea has been proactive in leading ongoing global efforts to share knowledge across borders. The country has also been able to drop its hepatitis B rates from 8% to 3% nationwide, driven largely by nationwide vaccinations. To help communities in need we must increase our collective knowledge base and shine a light on this silent disease by amplifying the voices that lives with this condition. Gilead has therefore appointed APCO to launch a storytelling video campaign, with the objective to leverage the right voices and right platforms to raise public awareness and drive conversation on hepatitis B

Strategy and Execution

Some 72% of patients use online reviews and testimonials as their first step in finding a new doctor. Patient stories offer valuable insights that go way beyond the statistics and the outcomes: they have the power to inspire, humanize, compel action, and challenge assumptions. It was obvious that impactful storytelling was not enough, we had to find the right voices that matter. We identified four inspiring individuals who are living with Hepatitis B, but most importantly, have dedicated their lives to uplifting their communities to tell their stories and raise awareness and drive dialogue on hepatitis B.

Deliver one unified message through four monumental voices with the right loudhailer is key to tacking the knowledge gap. To ensure that content was highly accessible, we commissioned BBC StoryWorks, leveraging the media provider’s rich multichannel engagement platforms to maximize the reach of the stories through a 360 approach, with a streamlined user-journey when it comes to content.

Well-curated audience journey optimizes content consumption to achieve high engagement rates. The campaign comprised of four stories, which were adapted into (a) long-form videos, (b) video cutdowns (1-minuters), and (c) articles to maximise audience engagement. 

Featuring Mr. Min (Korea), Mr. Lai (Hong Kong), Mr. Chua (Singapore) and Mr. Ho (Taiwan) who were all diagnosed with hepatitis B much later in life and wished that they had someone to turn to. They talk about how they commit their time to support and uplift others newly diagnosed with hepatitis B or  liver cancer. Mr. Ho’s daughter donated part of her liver to her father during his liver surgery recovery, and together, they now reach out to their community to raise awareness about hepatitis B – convincing one person at a time to go for screening.

The varied content formats were designed with deep audience insights to achieve high engagement rates:

The campaign started 1st November 2021, with new content every 2 weeks to sustain a steady drumbeat of new content, keeping things fresh for the audience.


As of 2 Jan 2022:

We set off at the start of the campaign to address the knowledge, awareness and attitudes of the general public towards liver health and disease in Asia. We wanted people to ask “Could it happen to me?” Over a period of 3 short months, the campaign saw a total click-through rate (CTR) of 35% from audience acquisition through social media amplification, racking 295,524 video views. We’ve achieved high visibility, high audience acquisition and high engagement – that’s AWARENESS.

The last-click attribution for article reads sits at 4%, with the average returning page view rate at 1.86x.  This means that the campaign was able to shift people’s ATTITUDES towards liver health to read more and gain KNOWLEDGE about the management and prevention of hepatitis B.

According to Hootsuite, the average engagement rate in 2021 on social media was 0.18%. Video posts achieve much higher engagement of over 6%.The healthcare pages perform higher than most brands on Facebook and Instagram, with an average engagement rate per post of 0.51%. This means that the campaign was performing 5x above industry average for social media engagement benchmarks.

Healthcare content has garnered more interest over the pandemic, but not all healthcare topics are of high interest. Circling back to our initial problem statement of low awareness in the management of liver health and hepatitis B, the campaign’s performance was definitely a great testament of how engaging the content was.



Video for Creating a Healthier Asia

Entrant Company / Organization Name

APCO Worldwide, Gilead Sciences


Entry Credits