TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards 2017: Bay Audiology reaches ears via heartstrings

The challenge

Kiwis are known the world over for their stoic attitude. While that might be helpful in creating a national identity, it’s not so great when you’re looking to help Kiwis suffering from hearing loss.

That fact, not to mention the perception that ‘hearing aids are for old people’, stood between Bay Audiology and its future plans. In order to open up new audiences, it decided on a research-driven approach looking for insights that could create personal and emotional connections with the topic.

Qualitative groups painted a telling story of emotional distance, that hearing loss was a burden and sufferers missed moments of laughter or intimacy.

A new narrative had to be created to reach an audience who could well be denying they even have a problem. From there came an epiphany that changed everything.

Simply put, it was about focusing on people, not patients. 

The response

While the initial task was to create motivation to book an appointment to create real business value, Bay Audiology would have to lift the emotional quotient to a point that put the cost in perspective against the value of the individual’s well- being and those around them.

At the heart of the marketing programme was a series of pre-recorded unscripted messages from the spouses and children of people who suffer hearing loss. These sufferers were then cajoled into having a hearing test in which they listened to the messages while hidden cameras recorded their reactions.

People watched online and on TV and recognised themselves and their loved ones in the stories created, sparking honest conversations about the effects of hearing loss on their family. 

The results

The campaign created an immediate and measurable response from people whose defining health issue made it difficult for them to respond to their loved ones, let alone marketing messages. 

Post analysis showed 40 percent of viewers took some direct action on seeing the activity, making an immediate impact through the web and 0800 channels. Qualified calls to the 0800 number increased by 29 percent against the previous four-month campaign period and Bay Audiology enjoyed month-on-month growth of between 10 percent and 36 percent.

All of this translated into sales, with the company enjoying its biggest month on record in March 2017.

“We turned emotion into action. Love for one’s family and friends is the most powerful marketing asset we have,” says the company.

“The results were immediate, and the gains will be long-term.”

Healthcare/Beauty; Best Brand Transformation
Campaign Name
Bay Audiology – Emotional Hearing Test
Company Name
Amplifon (Bay Audiology)
Marketing Partners
Saatchi & Saatchi
Best Brand Transformation: Mercury, VTNZ, Ziera

  • This story will also appear in the Awards issue of NZ Marketing. 
  • To read more on the TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards 2017, click here.

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