Central Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust

Campaign to launch Royal Manchester Children's Hospital

Four hospitals, one day

Managing the publicity for three hospital closures, and one launch, was all in a day’s work for Admiral in Manchester.

On the very same day that a new children’s hospital launched in the city, three other hospitals in the area closed.

Our mission

Admiral’s role was to raise awareness in the Greater Manchester area of the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital’s opening, and the other hospital closures.

We also aimed to protect the reputation of the new hospital by preparing it for potential issues and crises that could have arisen.

We did this while also preparing to manage the visit of The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh for the official opening of the children’s hospital a year later.

Strategy

Managing stakeholder communications while building a PR campaign around the clinical excellence of the hospital across various specialisms was central to our recommended approach.

First we mapped all regional stakeholders and built a stakeholder grid to ensure that we were communicating the changes to all interested audiences.

Following this, we set about planning a national and international media relations campaign, incorporating press trips, and trade and consumer media relations to promote the new hospital.  This included a regional media partnership with the MEN Group, securing editorial across 17 titles in the weeks prior to the opening to ensure all audiences were clear what was happening to hospital services on their patch.

 Results

  • A highly successful stakeholder launch event involved staff, patients, partners and supporters ahead of the public opening, with over 100 attendees
  • Media coverage secured across a number of critical national titles, including the Financial Times, the Sunday Express, Channel Five, Sky News and the BBC online
  • Trade media coverage in the HR, healthcare and medical profession titles. Blanket coverage also appeared across all local titles, as well as the Manchester Evening News as the anchor partner, without any external commercial sponsorship or advertising
  • A 16-page editorial supplement, which included a countdown clock, creating momentum and recognition for the opening date

“Admiral really made an enormous difference to how the trust presented itself during the new development and opened up so many opportunities for us. What fantastic coverage we had and a big thank you to everyone for the enormous efforts which went into making this so successful. We couldn’t have asked for more and everyone is truly delighted.”

Central Manchester University Hospitals Foundation Trust

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