The TrialBlazers

National Institute for Health and Care Research

Our TrialBlazer campaign prompted thousands to sign up for research trials for the very first time. We created a new community of research trial volunteers – dubbed The TrialBlazers – and witnessed a remarkable online mobilisation. Our Trialblazers took centre stage as the ‘campaign messenger’ as we asked for their help ‘recruiting’ their friends, family and colleagues to sign up for research trials via user generated content.

Uniting them in a single goal and empowering them with a simple message; ‘Join the TrialBlazers.’ Our campaign followed the Covid pandemic volunteer response when half a million people rolled up their sleeves and volunteered in the Covid Vaccine trial. Without this huge national effort we wouldn’t have the vaccine, and hundreds of thousands more would have lost their lives. We knew we had a window of opportunity to act, to mobilise this army of committed volunteers and pass on that commitment to others; turning taking part in research into a norm, a regular act like giving blood. By using them as the messenger to tell their stories, influence their friends and family and reach underserved groups, we left a lasting legacy and a new generation of research volunteers. In doing so we enabled the development of life changing medicines vaccines and treatment for years to come.