Millions of people worldwide owe their life to people whom they have never met – blood donors. Unfortunately, Romania is ranking second lowest in Europe in terms of blood donation, local donors providing only 65% of the total amount of blood needed. Only 1.7% of the population donates blood, a much lower percentage than in other countries.

Despite several initiatives of NGOs or private companies, Romania remains one of the few EU countries with less than 20 donors per thousand inhabitants. Voluntary blood donation is far from being customary in Romania. At a time when personal concerns are a priority, people are more interested and react fastest when someone close is in danger.

Against this background, the Regina Maria private healthcare network decided to actively support World Blood Donor Day (June 14), through an unconventional project that reminded people that their life may depend at some point on blood donated by a stranger.

In this context, we relied on an unconventional approach to the issue of blood donation, to raise the public’s awareness of its importance.

We looked for a location with a high daily pedestrian traffic, one that would also facilitate the display of eye-catching, unusual messages. We chose the busiest subway stations in Bucharest – Victoria Square (1 and 2) and Unirii Square (1 and 2). We took our idea to support World Blood Donor Day to Metrorex (the subway operator) and secured a free exposure agreement.

Print

Stickers in the form of “transfusion tubes” glued on the pavement and randomly joining distant seats on the subway’s platforms reproduced “transfusion tubes” that can save lives: thus, we created a spontaneous connection between people who did not know each other: any of them may have been, should the need arise, a blood donor for the other.

With the support of Metrorex, the “transfusion tubes” originally planned to be placed in stations for only one week remained visible for about two months, each day offering passengers who sat down a reason to raise their eyes, look at the opposite seat and imagine themselves in the position of saving the other passenger’s life. Or vice versa.

Campaign Results

On a day filled with messages from various non-governmental or private organizations celebrating World Blood Donor Day, the campaign initiated by Regina Maria enjoyed the highest visibility:

  • Three TV news reports totaling over 10 minutes, two radio news reports, 35 articles in print and online media. 235 likes, comments and shares on the company’s Facebook page and a reach of almost 30,000 people.
  • In only one month, about 2,000,000 passengers had the opportunity to “meet” each other via the “transfusion tubes”.

Basically, a single creative visual element born from a simple observation about the strangers who might become our saviors managed to bring people closer to each other, to generate discussion and a consistent media support.