Companies: National Abortion Federation
Agency Partners: Quirk Creative (creative and production); Apollo Partner (secured donated media placements for connected TV and digital); Burns Entertainment (enlisted and managed Kathy Najimy’s involvement with the campaign); Mophonics (music score); Obviously (social influencer activation); and Thread Creative (campaign messaging)
Duration: September 22 – November 30, 2022
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last June, eliminating the constitutional right to abortion, Quirk Creative cofounder and CEO Meryl Draper posted a call for help on LinkedIn on behalf of nonprofits working for abortion access.
That led to 15 organizations receiving help with web redesigns, press releases and creative campaigns, among other things, according to Quirk Creative.
Then Draper met with Veronica Jones, chief operations officer of the National Abortion Federation, and offered to help with an awareness campaign regarding the organization’s hotline, which offers information on abortion providers and limited financial assistance.
After discussions with the National Abortion Federation’s leadership, Draper realized that it would take “a coalition of agencies to really deliver what they were looking for,” she said.
Draper reached out to agencies that had previously helped nonprofits, who agreed to work on the campaign pro bono.
The vision for the campaign was to illuminate the lived experiences of people who have had an abortion.
“When you’re talking about something sensitive like abortion, it’s really important that what you’re saying is rooted in truth and grounded in reality,” Draper said.
The campaign creatives decided to center the campaign around the actress Kathy Najimy, star of films such as “Hocus Pocus” and “Sister Act,” who had spoken about her abortion and advocated for abortion rights.
“Anytime you have a celebrity associated with a campaign, you’re going to be able to get more eyeballs and visibility on the message,” Draper said. “That was our ultimate goal. This is an awareness campaign, but we really wanted to find someone who was comfortable sharing that lived experience on camera.”
The National Abortion Federation created a PSA that opens with women sitting on wooden chairs in a studio and a score that provides a serious tone.
“We used empty chairs on set to nod to all the untold stories that we couldn’t capture, and we used the fabric backdrop to echo [National Abortion Federation] brand colors,” said Emily Draper, Quirk’s commercial director for the video.
The first words are: “My name is Kathy Najimy, and I have had an abortion.”
The spot then jumps between Najimy and seven other women as they share the circumstances surrounding their abortion.
“I was working two jobs. I had no money. I was in no position to be a mother,” Najimy says.
Another woman says she had an abortion because she had “a very dysfunctional family.”
The main message of the video: “Abortion was the right call because it’s your call.”
The video closes with an explanation about the National Abortion Hotline and a graphic featuring the number and #ItsYourCall.
The media strategy was “wherever we can get free placement, we will go,” Meryl Draper said.
That included donated space on a billboard in Los Angeles and on connected TV. The campaign also promoted the video on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
“If you’ve had, need, or are struggling to plan an abortion, you’re not alone,” Najimy posted on Instagram. “No matter where you live, contact this hotline to help you plan seven days a week. Call 1-800-772-9100. #ItsYourCall. @nationalabortionfederation.”
– The PSA video was shared on Instagram Reels and generated a total of almost 330,000 views, according to Quirk. More than 250,000 of those were from a post shared by Najimy.
– The National Abortion Federation posted the video on YouTube, where it generated almost 2,000 views.
– Najimy posted the video on Twitter and generated more than 4,200 views.
This article originally appeared on PRWeek US.