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The global coronavirus pandemic changed many ways we approach problems and develop solutions. Emerging technology like 3D printing has played a vital role in the treatment and prevention of the coronavirus.

Our clients at Materialise developed several innovative solutions to support the fight, including hands-free door handles, shopping cart handles and oxygen masks. In particular, Materialise’s free door handle designs were downloaded and printed around the globe to help reduce contact with potentially contaminated surfaces.


Our challenge was to communicate Materialise’s 3D printed innovations supporting coronavirus containment efforts through media relations. Our goal was to secure media placements to expand awareness of the door handle designs, encourage design downloads and share the benefits of 3D printing for rapid product development.


The Franco team executed a national media relations campaign, including both proactive media pitching and reactive outreach to reporters who had recently covered related topics. Targeting technology, business and manufacturing media, Franco shared information on the door handles, video content showcasing the design process and handles in use and coordinated interviews with Materialise executives.


Franco secured 40 high-impact media placements featuring the door handle, generating a total potential audience reach of nearly 400 million. The free door handle designs were downloaded and printed more than 30,000 times around the world. In addition, Materialise printed and distributed several thousand handles to those without access to a 3D printer.