Jun 2021
Basis Technologies

How Digital Advertising Helped U.S. Government Raise Awareness of the Dangers of a Growing Healthcare Crisis

The Story

A U.S. Federal Government agency focused on national health safety was seeking to address the rise in opioid addiction and harm caused to communities. Each year, millions of Americans suffer from dependence or addiction to prescription or illicit opioids – a growing epidemic. The Federal Government in partnership with The White House launched a multi-tactical public awareness campaign to raise general awareness of the opioid epidemic and that addiction is widespread across the country and in local communities. Research showed many communities and citizens felt they were immune to the crisis. Storytelling messaging drove audiences to the campaign landing page to further engage with stories of diverse Americans impacted by the epidemic. The client partnered with Basis Technologies to build a digital strategy and tactical deployment around this important message.

The Goal

The client’s goal was to aggressively confront opioid addiction by educating and engaging a broader audience who may not necessarily believe they could be directly affected by the epidemic and shift the perception that anyone can become addicted to opioids.

The Challenge

The challenge for this client was reaching the appropriate target audience and measuring impact against them. Through extensive research, the Basis Technologies team was able to strategically define the target audience from both demographic and geographic perspectives and use that information to guide tactic and partner selection. The campaign was designed to reach people ages 25-69, mostly blue-collar with a lower household income, in key states that have the highest drug usage. A brand lift study was included to measure the direct impact that the ads had on the audience’s perceptions.

The Solution

The omni-channel media strategy was designed to connect with the target audience by generating initial awareness, encouraging engagement, and ultimately shifting perception. Utilizing a full-funnel approach, Basis Technologies partnered with Hulu to support campaign objectives over the course of fifteen months. Basis developed a layered targeting strategy with content adjacencies around news, health, and substance abuse, custom keyword alignments directly related to the opioid crisis, and third-party behavioral targeting based on target audience demographics and relevant interests (drug enforcement, drug policy reform).

The Basis Technologies team tackled ongoing performance by implementing real-time changes based on key performance indicators, exceeding the defined VCR, eCPM, and eCPC benchmarks. Ultimately, measurement through a Nielsen brand lift study proved the campaign was successful with an 84.9% overall lift in perception among exposed audiences, with 70% more likely to agree that anyone can become addicted to opioids compared to 37.9% of nonexposed audiences.


  • 84.9% overall lift in perception among exposed audiences
  • 141M Total Ad Impressions
  • 24.7M Completed Video Views
  • $0.05 eCPCV
  • 80.32% Video Completion Rate
  • 0.14% CTR


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