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Special Project

Special Project
From the 4th Annual Shorty Social Good Awards

Make-A-Wish® Where There's A Wish, There's A Way

Finalist in Integrated Campaign


On April 3, 2019, Make-A-Wish launched the 360-degree, "Where There's A Wish, There's A Way" integrated marketing campaign in collaboration with TBWA\CHIAT\Day. The campaign objective was to increase brand familiarity and consideration through significant earned media exposure. By engaging millions of new supporters, we move closer to achieving our vision of granting the wish of every eligible child. 

Campaign messaging objectives included: 

  1. A wish is a necessary part of a child’s overall medical treatment plan 
  1. Make-A-Wish is not a last wish 

During the campaign, Make-A-Wish told the stories of wish alum who have experienced the positive impact of their wish many years later. Their impactful and emotional stories helped to educate and address the misconception that Make-A-Wish only grants wishes for children with terminal illnesses.

The campaign was anchored by an inspiring PSA starring Make-A-Wish kids who are envisioning their one true wish. Wish kid Yaretzi wishes to be a mermaid; Addison wishes to train with astronauts; Kionna wishes to be cowgirl, Adam wishes to be football player and Hunter wishes to be a dinosaur. The PSA culminates with wish alum Ezra whose wish to be a firefighter was granted 15 years ago and inspired him to become a volunteer firefighter as an adult.

The campaign demonstrates that wishes are an important part of medical treatment, giving kids hope and a chance to see themselves stronger and braver. Wishes can give kids the strength to fight their critical illnesses. To get better. To grow up.

Strategy and Execution

In the U.S. Make-A-Wish is only able to reach 1 out of every 2 children who may be eligible for a wish. To engage more supporters in our mission, the campaign’s unique global strategy was centered around showcasing Make-A-Wish alum who are proof of the long-lasting benefits of a wish.

Each Wednesday in April became #WishWednesday as Make-A-Wish, along with its chapters and affiliates around the world, shared powerful wish alum stories like Ethan’s. Hear his story in his own words here.

These powerful wishes have been experienced by more than 450,000 wish kids, families and communities worldwide since 1980. The Make-A-Wish community of supporters, medical professionals, volunteers, alumni and wish families were encouraged to share a personal story of a wish alum that demonstrated the long-term life-changing impact of a wish come true. Make-A-Wish celebrity wish granters also participated in #WishWednesday’s by sharing some of the amazing wishes they’ve granted for children battling critical illnesses. Top social media influencers and celebrity wish granters included: Dwayne Johnson, Avril Lavigne, Kelly Clarkson, Dude Perfect, Buddy Valastro, Nigel Barker and Duff Goldman.

As part of the global strategy, Make-A-Wish America also engaged corporate sponsors to participate and grow our reach by sharing the PSA and activating the campaign throughout their earned and owned media channels.

Make-A-Wish supported the campaign through paid, earned and owned media including:

-Public relations and communications including three TODAY Show "Wish Week" segments (links can be found in the link section below.)

-TV PSAs (English and Spanish)

- In addition to Make-A-Wish kids appearing in the PSA, wish kid and aspiring artist Kara Kuper collaborated with Wish I Was to create the featured score in the PSA, “Ready To Start.”   

-Radio PSAs (English and Spanish): Make-A-Wish partnered with iHeartRadio to distribute and play the radio PSA on their network of stations throughout the country.

-Print advertisements: The Make-A-Wish print PSA ad was featured in People Magazine, Time Magazine, Money, Parents Latina, Better Homes and Gardens and Time International.

-Make-A-Wish social media engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn campaign landing page

-Make-A-Wish and TBWA\CHIAT\Day Employee Engagement

-The campaign was promoted through Captivate’s engaging, premium video content platform in elevator and lobby displays of premier office buildings across North America. 


The “Where There’s A Wish, There’s A Way” campaign garnered more than $42MM in media value in the first six months, as a result of the PSAs, public relations, social media, email, digital and sponsor activations. Make-A-Wish exceeded its campaign goal by 250%. To date, the campaign has generated
1.2B+ impressions and its reach continues to grow.

Highlights include:

Broadcast PSAs:

- The TV and radio PSAs generated 700M+ impressions.

- The TV PSA has aired in over 200 markets on 650 stations.

Public Relations:

-The public relations efforts garnered 36.8MM impressions.

-The TODAY Show aired "Wish Week" (April 24-26) and highlighted Make-A-Wish alum. In an unprecedented event on April 26, Make-A-Wish children and supporters cheered on TODAY show anchors Jenna Bush-Hager and Meredith Vieira, as they climbed The Vessel structure in NYC to raise awareness and donations for Make-A-Wish.

Social Media:

-#WishWednesday was used 3,972 times, garnering 91.1M impressions.

-Make-A-Wish America accounts garnered approximately 2.3M impressions.

-Make-A-Wish America Facebook posts reached 724,400 accounts & received 29K views of the :30 PSA.

Corporate Sponsor Highlights:

-25+ Make-A-Wish sponsors supported the campaign. Examples include:

-Disney teamed up with celebrity wish granter Will Smith to kick off World Wish Day, April 29, with a cause marketing social media campaign to amplify the power of wish granting.

-WWE shared the PSA throughout the WWE Universe, and WWE Superstars engaged with #WishWednesday and shared on social media.

-Subaru ran the PSA in 600 retail locations.

-American Airlines featured the print ad in “American Way.”


Video for Make-A-Wish® Where There's A Wish, There's A Way

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