BHF and Coronation Street


The British Heart Foundation wanted to grow awareness of the symptoms of female heart attack. 


Scaring people with hear attack statistics simply doesn’t work, because numbers don’t connect with people on an emotional level. 


What people do, however, connect with is other people. So we planned to drive emotional engagement by linking BHF’s heart health message to someone loved by millions, Coronation Street’s Audrey Roberts.


Closer working relationships between our production and commercial teams mean we have more visibility of future storylines on our biggest shows. So, when we heard that Audrey was going to have a heart attack, we knew we had a great opportunity for the British Heart Foundation.

We used Audrey’s story, to demonstrate that a heart attack can happen on any street. The storyline showed her heart attack moving from early symptoms to the event itself and beyond. We invited BHF to provide formal consultation throughout the filming.

The lead strategy focused on the ad breaks around Audrey’s heart attack happening on-screen, where we ran three specially made 10-second ads directing women to the BHF’s helpline with the v/o message “Heart attacks can happen on any street”. In addition to this ITV delivered a homepage takeover on Corrie’s website and mirrored on-air activity within the ITV Player.

Activity extended way beyond the realms of ITV, as we granted license of the Coronation Street logo for use across all platforms. Co-branded social media pushed people to relevant extra content and advice.

A BHF nurse was filmed on Corrie’s famous cobbles, and streamed on the BHF website and YouTube channels. There was also a competition that allowed viewers to win tours of the Corrie sets and fans could even send ‘get well soon Audrey’ e-cards.

Finally, the campaign extended in-store and the BHF displayed Audrey posters in their high street shops.


The ads were seen by 8.8m people & spontaneous recall the next day was an extraordinary 45%

74% correctly recalled the ad was from the BHF

Most importantly, the partnership led to a 33% increase in awareness of heart disease and a 24% increase in calls to the BHF helpline

The partnership won The Grand Pix Gold award, Gold for Media Owner and Silver for Best Collaboration with PHD and Drum at Media Week 2012

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