Campaigns: Voluntary Sector - Faberge egg hunt feeds charity coffers

Campaign: The Faberge Big Egg Hunt
Clients: Action for Children; Elephant Family
PR team: In-house
Timescale: February-May 2012
Budget: £10,000

From 21 February to 9 April, more than 200 giant eggs were hidden in secret locations throughout central London as part of The Faberge Big Egg Hunt. The event challenged the public to take on the world's biggest Easter egg hunt while raising funds for charities Action for Children and Elephant Family. The Faberge Big Egg Hunt used no paid-for advertising.

Objectives

- To raise awareness of the big egg hunt

- To generate positive media coverage for the brand

- To create an engaged online community

- To raise funds, awareness and support for Action for Children and Elephant Family.

Strategy and plan

The event ran for a six-week period, so the PR team devised a strategy to maintain media interest and public attention throughout.

News stories were developed and sold in before, during and after the hunt to generate coverage in national, regional, consumer and trade press.

Events included launch celebrations, PR stunts and Guinness world record announcements. A media partnership was arranged with the London Evening Standard.

The team developed a PR toolkit for corporate sponsors, artists and external stakeholders to develop bespoke media plans for themselves or their clients. It also created a full media plan including key messages, Q&As and a photo and artist database to support queries, media requests and for crisis management.

Each charity promoted the hunt through their respective social media platforms. Beattie Communications was brought in to handle the activities on specific Big Egg Hunt platforms. The Faberge PR team supported comms intermittently.

Measurement and evaluation

The campaign generated more than 400 pieces of media coverage. Highlights included the London Evening Standard, The Times, The Daily Telegraph, BBC, ITV, Hello, OK, Time Out and Vogue online. Internationally, it was covered by ABC and NBC News, LA Weekly, Forbes, Le Monde, O Globo and the Gulf Times.

The hunt drew 216,000 unique visitors to the website in six weeks, 7,000 Facebook supporters, 3,500 Twitter followers and backing from celebrities on social media.

Results

The campaign raised more than £1m for the two charities. More than one million people saw and visited the eggs, and 12,000 donated directly to the charities via text. Action for Children experienced a 34 per cent increase in visitors to its website when the campaign was launched.

According to NFP Synergy, the campaign achieved 15 per cent awareness with the general public across the UK, and ranked 11th in the list of services, initiatives or activities of which the public were aware. Most of the other campaigns in the list were nationwide or longstanding events such as Macmillan Coffee Morning (52 per cent), Earth Hour (24 per cent) and Teenage Cancer Trust at the Royal Albert Hall (23 per cent).

SECOND OPINION - JOHNNY PITT, CEO, LAUNCH GROUP

This campaign was a colossal success. It achieved blanket media coverage, engaged hundreds of thousands of people and raised more than £1m for charity - all for £10,000. An amazing return.

As well as brilliant pictures, hunting for Faberge eggs - a product steeped in historical, mysterious, regal luxury - had natural appeal. One had a childlike desire to bump into one.

The careful, gradual reveal built momentum as the eggs started to appear, day after day. By the final exhibition, during Easter, there had been something for everyone - from the international press to social media. In short, it was brave - especially given the risk of vandalism - quirky, fun social engagement.

So, was this a template for future urban experiential campaigns? Probably not.

It succeeded thanks to a combination of charity feel-good factor, iconic locations, free celebrity advocacy, a compact timescale and the headline involvement of a brand with unique appeal and cachet. It was based on a creative that simply, and brilliantly, captured a mood.

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