LITERARY CAMPAIGN: Putting books back in the picture

A 2007 study by a group of publishers found the average value of a book dropped from £4.72 in 2004 to £4.64 in 2006.

Campaign: The Big Picture Campaign
Client: Booktrust
PR Team: In-house
Timescale: February-June 2008
Budget: £1,200

It also revealed that picture books are in decline, books for children over eight are rarely illustrated and libraries are stocking fewer picture books. The publishers approached national reading charity Booktrust to analyse the state of the picture-book market.

Objective
To raise the profile of picture books and illustrators.

Strategy and plan
Booktrust launched the campaign with a call to publishers to help find the UK's ten best new illustrators. The competition prize was a place in an exhibition at the Illustration Cupboard in Piccadilly, London, from 22 April-6 June.

Measurement and evaluation
The campaign generated 72 pieces of coverage, including features in The Times, The Independent on Sunday, Evening Standard, Telegraph Magazine and Metro.

Results
Illustration Cupboard owner John Huddy said the exhibition was one of the most popular shows he had put on. Viewing was extended for a further two weeks and the gallery's website received 1,000 more hits in a week than normal.

Travel publisher Rough Guides struck a deal with Booktrust to produce The Rough Guide to Picture Books. Waterstones and Tesco agreed to distribute over 90,000 free copies.

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