Bike for Beats rolls out in Ottawa

The inaugural media campaign for the soon-to-be annual event launches this week in Ottawa, using TV, radio and social media to build a support base for the University of Ottawa Heart Institute.

On April 7, 50 cyclists holding bicycle tires over their head arranged themselves at Ottawa’s Rideau Centre to spell out ‘B4B,’ an acronym for Bike for Beats.

The event marked the launch of the inaugural Medtronic cycling fundraiser featuring 25 km, 50 km and 100 km routes to raise money for the University Of Ottawa Heart Institute on Sept. 26.

It also marked the start of a regional multimedia campaign by Toronto’s The Collective (who handled both media and creative) to encourage riders to sign up for the event.

Starting this week, radio, online and marketplace POP has rolled out in the Ottawa-Gatineau area, with TV spots to start airing in June at the peak of the fundraising drive.

‘This is a first-time initiative for the city of Ottawa,’ Geoff Siegel, The Collective’s VP client services, tells MiC. ‘Hopefully this will roll out to other cities down the road.’

Targeting those over 25 years old, Siegel says the 30-second TV spots are a call to action.

‘It’s all recruitment-driven,’ says Siegel. ‘Hopefully it will prompt people to log onto our events website.’

Siegel says the radio advertising will be heard in two-week bursts through the end of July, ending simultaneously with the TV spots. Social media promotion will also take place across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

The goal is both to recruit participants and raise funds for this year’s event, Siegel says, but also to increase the number of people willing to donate organs in the future.

‘There’s real need to bring awareness to the world class services that the Ottawa Heart Institute delivers,’ says Siegel. ‘We’re raising money for today, but we’re creating a new donor base for tomorrow.’