CAMPAIGNS: Crime charity raises public participation - Charity PR

Client: Crimestoppers Trust

PR Team: Aurelia Public Relations with Crimestoppers

Campaign: National Crimestoppers Week, 16 - 20 September 2002

Timescale: January - September 2002

Budget: Part of retainer

The Crimestoppers concept began in 1976 in New Mexico and quickly spread through North America and Europe.

It was established in the UK in 1988 as a charity to combat crime, and for the promotion and encouragement of public participation in the prevention and solution of crime. It provides a national freephone number, and guarantees the anonymity of the caller.

Retained agency Aurelia was tasked with increasing Crimestoppers' UK profile.

Objectives

To encourage public recognition of the freephone number and increase the volume of calls taken.

To educate the public about how Crimestoppers works. It was important to communicate that Crimestoppers is a charity, and not an arm of the police or Home Office, and that anonymity is guaranteed.

To raise the profile of dir-ector of Crimestoppers Roy Clark.

Under-16s had almost no knowledge of the existence of the charity, so they were a particular target.

Strategy and Plan

Aurelia developed a new, higher-profile concept for the already existing National Crimestoppers Week.

A date was set for the third week of September, which tied in with BBC1's Cracking Crime Day and London Fashion Week.

Richard and Gloria Taylor - the parents of murdered schoolboy Damilola Taylor - launched a school's youth crime poster campaign.

A crime survey, co-funded by GMTV, the Daily Mirror and Crimestoppers was introduced to focus news coverage.

A celebrity supporters group was created to boost awareness, including Vinnie Jones, Gary Lineker and Nick Ross. Fashion designer Bruce Oldfield hosted an event to launch his new collection in aid of Crimestoppers Trust.

Measurement and Evaluation

Survey results generated a front-page story in the Daily Mirror on 16 September, with further coverage the following day. It also generated 42 minutes of airtime on GMTV on the same day, which launched its week-long support for the campaign. The programme adopted the crime theme, and made reference to Crimestoppers each day throughout the week.

The school's youth poster launch secured a seven minute BBC1 interview.

Further coverage included a crime feature in the Evening Standard, an ITN-syndicated news story, and mentions on BBC Radio 1 and Radio 5 news, and Radio 4's Today programme.

Roy Clark was promoted as a credible authority on crime in the UK, which led to appearances on Channel 4 News, GMTV and ITN.

Results

The Bruce Oldfield party raised £40,000, despite fund-raising not being a primary objective. Crimestoppers rec-orded a 25 per cent increase in calls during the week, while understanding and national reach are expected to rise steadily over the next five years.

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