Category PR
Subcategory Digital communication
Entrant agency Fabula Hill+Knowlton Strategy
Client Vilnius university
Brand Vilnius university
Product/service Education
Release date 29.08.2016

At the start of 2016 more and more people in the science community started referring to the breakthrough in CRISPR/Cas9 studies as the potential Nobel Prize. However, major science publications kept talking about Berkeley and MIT rivalry in this affair… While only briefly mentioning Vilnius University and its professor V. Šikšnys input in this important science breakthrough. How to use this situation to promote the name of the University, to make people aware of our scientists’ potential and to make science interesting to wider public?

The main goals of the campaign were to promote the name of the Vilnius university as also to make people aware of Lithuania’s scientists’ potential. When planning the campaign one more goal was set by ourselves – to make science interesting and understandable for wider public. International talks about “CRISPR Nobel” let us choose a strong message – Vilnius University Professor V. Šikšnys is a candidate to win a Nobel prize. The chosen way to communicate let us speak about achievements of Lithuanian scientist and make Lithuanians proud of them.

Campaign launched with interview by prof.Šikšnys and rector of Vilnius University at the most popular topical news talk show on national TV. Story was picked up by other media. And it went viral in social media with thousands of shared and comments. Further activities included creation of short movie explaining CRISPR/Cas9 and prof. Šikšnys role in it and sharing it on social media. We continued active communication in social media by creating Facebook event “In anticipation of Nobel” and inviting all to wait for results of the Nobel Awards together. The event FB page streamed Nobel Price Announcement while the story was extensively covered in the media. Event T-shirt was manufactured featuring custom art for inspired scientific invention

Documented results: - The launch interview – one the most viewed talk shows in three months: 4,6 TV rate, more than 20 000 online views - Facebook event: 49 000 people reached, 1900 event attendees, 4100 views - A home-made popular science movie went viral: 171 000 views, 1100 shares, 2400 positive reactions, more than 510 000 people reached Never before any science issue was so widely discussed in Lithuanian media and in social media. Never before any science event was so anticipated and talked about. And though the Nobel Prize last year went to authors of different invention, prof. Šikšnys became a household name in Lithuania and the story of Lithuanian science acquired a completely new angle.