Back Together: the first medical-communication summit in Croatia

back together summit

About the client

Back Together is the name of the successful medical-communication summit that was held in Croatia for the first time, during 18th and 19th September 2021., it gathered 40 of the most distinguished experts in the fields of medicine, science and communication. The rich two-day program, unlike any other in our country, had a total of 12 educational panel discussions. That way, the public was assured a platform for open and healthy discussions on important and interesting topics. Everyone interested had the chance to upgrade their own health, to improve their understanding of health information, to find out more about the current trends in medicine and to listen to what the experts have to say about the current health crisis.

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The challenge

Since the wish to realize this event came up during one of the largest crises of the 21st century, the Coronavirus pandemic, the main challenges related to the safe and responsible organization of the event itself. That’s why the Back Together summit was held entirely online, in accordance with the epidemiological measures. That included the conduction of all meetings in a digital format, along with providing quick and safe communication support from our team at all times. The multidisciplinary panel discussions of the leading experts were held in City Plaza in Zagreb, without a live audience, but rather broadcast online. Those who were interested in listening to the panels just had to sign up on the summit’s official website for free. A high quality way of transmitting key messages of the panel discussions was a challenge in and of itself. Thanks to the expertise of the CTA komunikacije team and the strategic choice of communication tools, all the demands of the “new normal” were met in a timely fashion. One of the primary goals was to offer the public simple, free and accessible answers to their most burning medical questions. Furthermore, specific goals were shaped to inform the public about the event itself by promoting interaction and gradually increasing its scope on social media. The number of media posts about the summit was increased, giving a look into the general information, themes, attendants and participants of the event, along with information about the organizers, sponsors and the possible ways of participation. The most important goal by far was to have as many people registered to watch the panel discussions as possible.

The solution

For the Back Together summit, the idea of Natko Beck, his wife Tajana, and Mrs. Vesna Babić, we thought out the whole communication concept, for social media and for national and specialized media. Along with creating a strategy, we took on the role of leading all their social media accounts and media relations, and we provided communicational support during the entire project. In order to reach the public throughout Croatia, and neighbouring countries too, it was important that the information from the official social media profiles reached as many people as possible. One of the direct communication tools that we used to achieve this were newsletters, regularly distributed to all those who signed up. They contained information on the speakers, themes of the panels, ways of registration, and an invite to participate. The subscribers would often find a video file in their mailbox, and in one of them Dr. Natko Beck personally thanked them for expressing an interest. The biggest value of the newsletter was realized on the days when the summits were held, as the newsletter contained links to the livestreams of the panel discussions. That way, we simultaneously worked on the expansion of the audience, increasing their familiarity with the event and growing their interest for future panels.

Regarding the social media profiles, they hadn’t existed before, so we had to make their profiles on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube. Every day, just before a panel, we would present a panelist on the social media channels. The rest of the content related to educational questions, which we used to announce future panel themes, and daily life questions – all with the goal of increasing the event’s engagement and reach. Every couple of days, we would share articles from Croatia’s most read news sites, to bolster the credibility of the event. After the livestreams, every panel discussion was followed by the publishing of a photo gallery in the shortest amount of time possible.

Just as the event ended, 3,181 people followed Back Together on Facebook, 1,005 on Instagram, 272 on LinkedIn and 348 on YouTube. Despite the fact that the event finished, those numbers are still growing. In the long run, the goal is to reach a new audience while maintaining the interest of current fans so that they will be informed about the topic in the future. The solution lies in the consistent posting of entertaining and educational content on social media, which includes all the collected material so far. Overall, the summit’s broadcast amassed a total of 11,317 views on YouTube, with 296 new subscribers. In the end, there were over 4000 subscribers.

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In the span of almost two months, the posts have reached 915,728 people on Facebook and 254,208 on Instagram. The number of impressions was the largest on Facebook – an astounding 1,273,404, with 1,100,163 on Instagram and 56,261 on LinkedIn. 52,431 Facebook users interacted with the posts, on Instagram there were 5,336 of them, and LinkedIn saw 1,186 interactions. Additionally, Facebook recorded 17,809 collective views across all the official videos. The official website averaged 305 daily visitors. On Saturday, the first day of the summit, the number totaled 2,285 visitors, and on Sunday, a bit less – 1,682. In other words, during the two days of the Back Together summit, their website has been visited by 3,967 people. The synergy of public relations and digital activity was the most notable in the increase of the number of subscribers to the newsletter, especially after successful publicity stunts, like the interview with Dr. Natko Beck.

Certain individual speakers and moderators recorded short announcement videos in which they invited people to participate or give some insights into their panels. The panelist’s texts were published on the official website under the category “Čitaonica” (Reading room), and some of them were published to LinkedIn and Facebook. The event was even announced on prominent television news shows. Dr. Natko Beck's appearances in Good morning, Croatia on HRT, in Newsroom on N1 or in “Zdravlje na Kvadrat” (Health squared) on NovaTv are just some of the examples. In the campaign’s 40 days of operation, there have been a total of 71 media posts. From those 71 posts, 64 were on news portals, one was a radio show and six were television appearances.

Through joint efforts and working together, we successfully contributed to the creation of a new communication channel for better health across all aspects. Besides that, the foundations for further impact and the continuation of the project were set. Many individuals got the chance to gather valuable information about responsible behavior and the proper ways of caring about their health. Ultimately, by adopting the advice about the dangers of false and unverified information that can endanger physical and mental health, the main purpose of the Back Together summit was fulfilled.