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Blue, Not Blue: Provocative New Ad Campaign Promotes the Plan's Values

Blue Shield of California promotes access to care for all Californians regardless of race, ethnicity or sexuality. In a new ad campaign, we support the need for emotional resiliency and rebuilding communities devastated by tragedy


Blue Shield of California has launched a new advertising campaign in markets across the state. The campaign reflects the issues facing Californians and the nonprofit health insurance plan’s support to its plan members for their health, happiness and well-being.

Blue Shield’s Jeff Robertson, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, answers questions about the campaign:


Q. What does the Blue/Not Blue ad campaign mean to you?

A. With human rights and social issues impacting the health of our communities, members, employees and loved ones, now more than ever feels like the right time to take a stand on what we believe in, particularly as it relates to one’s physical and emotional well-being.

When we set out to develop our brand campaign this year we really wanted to leap frog where we were with the Brand, which was relaunched just two years ago – taking a bolder approach both visually and in tone on who we are as a company. We knew we had gained significant traction with consumers with our most recent campaigns, but we also wanted to further set ourselves apart from the competition by telling our and consumers stories, sharing the values we hold true.


Q. This campaign confronts the real-life drama … the terrible damage from wildfires, the stress of fighting cancer, the impact of school shootings…why take on such sensitive subjects?

A. There is a story behind every one of the images.  They are stories about real people, real customers, and real situations. As it was also important that we not exploit any particular situation such as the devastation of the recent fires, we cast our commercial with individuals who had experienced these real-life challenges much like many of our own employees and members have experienced.      

As a nonprofit health plan serving nearly 4.5 million Californians, we acknowledge, respect and support the real-life challenges and diversity of our plan members. We stand with them in their quest for happiness, good health and well-being. This campaign reflects our values and reminds all consumers that we’re here to support them.


Q. The director, Britton Caillouette, has overcome tremendous health issues. Is that why he was selected?

A. Britton’s courage is truly inspiring. His work is compelling and honest. He captures on video the human qualities in each of his subjects.  I am proud to work with him. His personal story is unforgettable.


Q. Can you tell us more about the strategy, target audience, markets?

A. Our campaign will reach across the state with concentrated media placements across Southern California as well as San Francisco/Bay Area.

At the young age of 14, our director Britton was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer, and believes he wouldn’t have made it without access to health care. The experience has taught Britton to be fearless, and to seize every opportunity.  

After serving in the military during the era of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Ben and his husband, Duncan, reflected on their relationship and emphasized how much they appreciate the ability to be open. 
Shortly after their wedding, Niki was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. Although it hasn’t been easy, she and her husband, Joe, have found that laughter has helped them get through their most difficult moments. 
After a shooting at his school, Weggens maintained a positive outlook on the future and put his energy towards making a positive change.