A Boost For Mental Health: Promoting The Houston Hope Line

hhci bb (1)

Craig Group’s pro bono marketing project benefited the Hope and Healing Center & Institute and won the 36th Annual AMA Crystal Award for Paid Display Billboard and Corporate Citizenship. To learn more about each campaign, please view our press release here.


Craig Croup partnered with the Hope and Healing Center & Institute to increase both the call volume and awareness of the Houston Hope Line.


There is no doubt that mental burnout and isolation of our modern society has been exacerbated by the pandemic.

According to one Centers for Disease Control report, which surveyed adults across the U.S. in late June of 2020, 31 percent of respondents reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, 13 percent reported having started or increased substance use, 26 percent reported stress-related symptoms, and 11 percent reported having serious thoughts of suicide in the past 30 days.

But even without COVID, mental illness is a huge issue in the U.S.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness reports that 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year and 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year. Studies show that 50 percent of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75 percent by age 24. Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10-34.

That’s part of the reason why the Houston Hope Line, a call-in resource provided by the Hope and Healing Center & Institute for mental health, is so important for Houstonians.The Hope Line offers a 7-day a week, free option for people to talk to a counselor for everyday frustration and emotional distress.

The challenge is that not everyone who needs help knows what options are available for them, or they feel like their available options will be cost-prohibitive. Many also feel stigmatized for needing help in the first place.

So the Hope and Healing Center and Institute partnered with Craig Group for a no-fee campaign to ease the stigma and get more people the help they need.


The goal of the campaign was to increase both the call volume and awareness of the Houston Hope Line.

The campaign needed to be both broad in that the geography was the entire Houston metropolitan area but targeted to the people most likely to need help. Craig Group utilized Paid Search, Google Ads for users actively seeking resources, and interest based targeted Facebook/Instagram ads to reach the intended audience.

In order to effectively manage the media spend, Craig Croup utilized Flighting – or running media only during specific windows to maximize message reception and budget – and Dayparting – running search and social only while phone calls would be answered at the Hope Line. The campaign also focused radio and streaming audio during evening drive times. A high visibility Out of Home plan (billboard) rounded out the reach and call based strategy.

New creative and visuals for the campaign conveyed relatable messaging that talked like people, not practitioners. The imagery reflected the idea of a breakthrough as well as the empathy and compassion with which the callers would be treated. The copy was straightforward and conversational, with tight, empathic messages on the billboards: We got you. We get it. We feel you. We hear you. And the tagline (The call is free. And you might just feel that way too.) was a warm invitation to reach out for assistance.

Craig Group also secured $40,000 of in-kind donations to supplement the existing media budget, increasing the campaign budget by 50 percent. This included in-kind donations from Spotify, Google and Outfront Media.


There were over 842 total calls that took place via Social ads, and 166 clicks to call from Search, putting people directly in touch with the trained crisis professionals. The average cost per call was $20.92 which is excellent considering that in Telehealth the standard cost per call is $40-$50.

Throughout the campaign, there were more than 12.6K total link clicks across Social and Search. The campaign drove close to 70K total engagements on Social, displaying the campaign’s effectiveness in connecting with users.

“Mental Healthcare access and awareness is critical for our community,” said Summer Craig, Founder of Craig Group. “Craig Group is honored to partner with the Hope and Healing Center and Institute on this important issue.”  

Read the Case Study

“Craig Group provided a marketing strategy, messaging platform and media plan to help grow our Hope Line call volume from zero to over 100 per month.”

Posted in

Are You Ready To Grow Your Revenue And Your Expectations?

Change takes initiative. Let’s get the ball rolling by reaching out and telling us about yourself, your challenges and your goals.