CASE STUDY 2: Diabetes is Not Our Destiny


BNC helped increase awareness and social media engagement of the Diabetes Is Not Our Destiny program for Oklahoma Tribal Engagement Partners (OKTEP).


OKTEP wanted to reach low-income Native American families, including those benefiting from WIC, with their message of choosing, preparing, and consuming more nutritious foods, including traditional foods, in an effort to increase diabetes prevention education.

Evaluation of the case

Diet and nutrition choices are a very personal thing. How do we go about influencing how a person eats? Fear tactics may be memorable and may even work to a degree, but don’t leave people with a good feeling. Showing positive people leading by example was the approach decided upon.


BNC worked with OKTEP to identify a variety of Native American families and individuals who live, eat, and breathe very healthy lifestyles who could be spokespeople for this campaign. In addition, we included a few well-known Native American chefs who prepare traditional foods with a healthy spin. 

Marketing materials created included posters, brochures, mini-documentary videos, cooking videos with the chefs, social media posts, web assets, and more that centered our spokespeople. Billboards featuring some of the spokespeople and the tagline Diabetes is Not Our Destiny were posted in targeted areas.

In the videos, spokespeople talked about their healthy lifestyles, including personal stories about running, working out as a family, participating in the martial arts, coaching soccer, and more; and passing along healthy habits to the next generation. The cooking videos featured chefs using healthy, low-cost, traditional ingredients to prepare nutritious, well-rounded meals and sharing recipes. 


BNC’s recommendation was to let the people speak for themselves, sharing their ideas of what it means to live a healthy lifestyle and to really set an example. As with many of our campaigns, it’s very important for most or all of our spokespeople to be real people from the target communities. Representation truly matters when attempting to reach a specific audience and making the desired impact.