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The Communications Unit is responsible for the communications of the Cancer Society of Finland and the Finnish Cancer Foundation, and participates in the design and implementation of campaigns, events, websites and other communication projects of the Finnish Cancer Registry, Health Department and Fundraising Unit.

In 2016, digital communications work continued to intensify. Process enhancement, knowledge management, and analytics based formative work are increasingly emphasized in communications activity.

An extensive overhaul of the CSF’s and the Cancer Foundation’s websites started in 2015 and was completed in 2016. At the same time, the mutual efficiency of social media and the web pages were intensified. The Finnish Cancer Registry’ website was conceptualised in 2016. The site’s technical implementation and content production will be carried out in 2017.

In 2016, the communications unit developed the social media capabilities of its staff.

One of the projects of the 80th anniversary of the CSF was the publication of Cancer in Finland 2016 in three languages – Finnish, English and Swedish. All the graphics and tables in the publication are done as responsive design, meaning they are suitable for mobile browsing.

The CSF started publishing a newsletter in honour of the 80th anniversary. The first issue was sent out in October 2016. By the end of the year it had 400 subscribers.

The CSF’s graphic guidelines of Cancer Organizations were revamped in 2016. The new guidelines take into account that most of the CSF’s communications has shifted online and that the printing work is considerably less than before. The guidelines are available on the CSF’s intranet.

Communication work increasingly foregrounded placed itself digitally. This was done through two internal trainings and by designing the joint strategy work of three organizations (Finnish Cancer Society, Finnish Heart Association and Finnish Association for Mental Health Association).

The communications unit was involved in the work of the Cancer Society of Finland’s Strategy 2020.


The CSF organised five press conferences in 2016 and published 84 press releases. The most frequent news topics were the 80th anniversary celebrations, fundraising, cancer research, nicotine products, and smoking.

The communications work monitors the presence and coverage of cancer organisations in the media. Media monitoring was reorganised in autumn 2016, and, the digital marketing and communication software company Koodiviidakko was selected as a partner for media monitoring, starting 2017. The aim is to better analyse social media and blogs, in addition to traditional media.

Social media

At the end of 2016, the CSF had 5 966 ​​likes of the Facebook page (in 2015 the number was 4 254). The Elämä ilman syöpä (Life Free from Cancer) page was set up in April. At the end of the year it had 163 likes.

The CSF Cancer has three Twitter accounts. The English language Cancer Society of Finland publishes mainly research results. It has 704 followers (in 2015 the number of followers was 536). The CSF account publishes newsletters, tweets about interesting subjects and re-tweets topical issues for Finns. The account is followed byby 1 220 Twitter users (in 2015 the number was 729). There were 548 followers on the @ SSYudistuu account set up for the CSF strategy work (in 2015 the number was 233).

The Käry youth smoke-free Facebook page replaced the youth wellbeing Fressis page. By the end of the year, Fressis had 1 212 followers. Käry had 1 027 followers.

The CSF also has a Youtube channel, which has 256 followers.

Online communications 

The main online media websites for cancer organizations are All About Cancer, the CSF and the Ilman Syöpää site on cancer prevention. The Ilman Syöpää site was published in spring 2016 in two language versions. The three sites form a composite that replaces the earlier portal. Digital communication requires constant monitoring, measurement, and development. The communications unit is responsible for website updating, analysing, developing and marketing.

The All About Cancer site for patients and loved ones had about 105 000 user sessions a month in 2016. The most popular part of the site was the renewed ‘facts about cancer’ section, which was reviewed by specialist physicians. The CSF website is mainly aimed at organisations, volunteers, scholarship applicants and the media. The website had some 8 000 user sessions a month. The Ilman Syöpää  site is primarily targeted at people who are interested in their own health and about cancer prevention. This site had about 5 500 user sessions a month.

The upgrading of the website series continued in 2016 within member associations. The websites of 10 regional associations and the Association of Cancer Patients in Finland were conceptualised in the spring with a visually and structurally uniform CSF look. The new sites were launched in autumn 2016. The CSF’s communications unit coordinated the project, and was responsible for the content, the pictorial work, and staff training so that member organizations can maintain the sites themselves.

There is intense competition for online visibility. The CSF’s communication work seeks to ensure that people find quality content on the site without any difficulty. For this reason, in developing of the CSF’s webpages we pay special attention to search engine optimization, analytics, conversion optimization, and the use of social media and blogs.

Internal communications

Ten issues of the CSF’s internal newsletter were sent to all Cancer organizations. The Communications Unit is responsible for developing the common intranet for CSF and for maintaining the image bank.

Syöpä-Cancer magazine

The CSF’s magazine is its most important printed output. In 2016, the Syöpä-Cancer magazine appeared four times. The themes it covered included cancer prevention, colorectal cancer, the 80th anniversary of the CSF, and stories.

The magazine’s circulation is 108 232 (2016). The magazine was posted to the CSF’s member associations. The magazine carries a Swedish-language supplement for readers who wanted it. The Swedish supplement had a print run of 6 000 copies. Sirkku Jyrkkiö (docent) from Turku continued as the editor in chief.

To mark the 80th anniversary of the CSF, the third issue of the magazine was a bigger, 48-page, special. The issue covered various forms of cancer treatment, including radiotherapy, and cervical cancer screening. In addition, there were plenty of patient stories.

The 80th anniversary was also celebrated with the writing competition “The moment I remember my age”, which featured 23 stories. The five-member jury, consisting of the members of the editorial board, chose the entry by Timo Leppälä from Rovaniemi, titled Mistäpä sen tietäis eeltä (How do you first know it?),   written in a Ounasvaara dialect. The second writing competition was started April 2016 and ran to 2017. The subject of the competition is cancer through the eye of a friend or loved one. A survey of the readership of the magazine was started at the end of 2016.