5th February 2021

“You only die once but you live every day,” Lives Reflected – compassion captured by Mammoth

Mammoth’s digital, design and PR teams are proud to play a part in creating a living legacy for Northern Ireland with the launch of Lives Reflected; a Belfast Cathedral Initiative.

Lives Reflected is an online book of remembrance, developed and designed by Mammoth, for people to upload tributes of loved ones who have died due to Covid and other causes.

When we were approached by Belfast Cathedral to work on the initiative, we wanted to create a place where all members of the community share memories of a loved one or stories of their experiences during lockdowns.

The brief was simple, however the emotive context of the project for everyone involved was a learning of how to work with individuals going through the motions of grief.

Victoria Hamilton, Mammoth video content producer project managed short video interviews of the campaign ambassadors – former NI footballer Gareth McAuley and midwife Bronagh O’Connell. Both ambassadors had to deal with the loss of loved ones in 2020 during the difficult restrictions of the first lockdown, but they wanted to take part in the campaign to celebrate their relatives’ lives.

Victoria shares her experience of the campaign – “We knew conducting interviews with Bronagh and Gareth would be a delicate and emotive experience. It’s not something we do often, and we knew there was a great responsibility in telling these personal stories.”

Victoria and the video content team undertook a lot of research before interviewing them as well as drafting open questions and setting up a quiet recording space to talk privately.

Victoria adds – “we let the conversation flow naturally, allowing them to tell their story in their own words. It was quite an emotionally draining experience and in other ways uplifting to hear both speak so lovingly about their parents.”

The video content was filmed and edited by Mammoth at its headquarters in Belfast and was uploaded onto the Lives Reflected stories section of the website along with other stories provided by members of the public.

Victoria comments – “We did the interviews over the course of a morning of the launch. They had been so open and honest with us, which brought about a great sense of responsibility. Due to the sensitive nature of the recordings, the stories required time to be crafted, therefore they were published a few days after the launch; also offering another opportunity to promote the campaign.”

Compassionate communications

The Dean of Belfast the Very Rev. Stephen Forde was the key spokesperson for the campaign taking part in media interviews, along with the campaign ambassadors.  The Dean was briefed on key messaging, emphasising how important Lives Reflected is to bring peace to people by sharing tributes of loved ones.

Mammoth’s PR Director Gill Grattan shares how she managed the campaign – “The media launch at Belfast Cathedral was strictly private not only to keep it socially distanced, but to respect the privacy of the ambassadors.”

Gill adds – “As the preparations for the launch developed, we collectively realised that we needed to protect the hearts of the people we were putting in front of a national audience, therefore not exposing them to too many media interviews.”

Mammoth worked closely with Belfast Cathedral to orchestrate the appropriate time to launch the campaign, whilst heeding the advice of government restrictions, aspiring to share a glimmer of positivity during another period of uncertainty.

PR, Web and Creative ensured that they were aligned to launch of Lives Reflected before the NI Executive made an announcement that afternoon about further restrictions.

With meticulous planning and media forecasting the Lives Reflected launch was successful – the news release, press interviews and photo call images hit news bulletins and publications six hours before any further lockdowns were announced.

The outpouring of the campaign was overwhelming with people sharing stories of loved ones within minutes of the website going live and hearing the positivity around the campaign in the media gaining a reach of 707 million in its first two weeks. The campaign continues into 2021 for information visit www.livesreflected.com

Mammoth’s digital, design and PR teams are proud to play a part in creating a living legacy for Northern Ireland with the launch of Lives Reflected; a Belfast Cathedral Initiative.

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