CAMPAIGNS: International PR; Athens gets a taste of the UK

Client: The British Embassy and the British Council in Athens PR Team: PubliCom/Hill & Knowlton Campaign: To launch and promote ‘Britain in Greece’, an initiative designed to improve Britain’s commercial and cultural image in Greece. Timing: May 1994-October 1995 Cost: pounds 95,000

Client: The British Embassy and the British Council in Athens

PR Team: PubliCom/Hill & Knowlton

Campaign: To launch and promote ‘Britain in Greece’, an initiative

designed to improve Britain’s commercial and cultural image in Greece.

Timing: May 1994-October 1995

Cost: pounds 95,000



The British Embassy decided, early in 1994, to launch an in-itiative to

improve Britain’s commercial and cultural image in Greece. A two-week

festival was planned for September/October 1995 entitled ‘Britain in

Greece’, which would include commercial exhibitions, arts performances

and exhibitions, sporting events and displays.



Objectives



The objective of the project was to remind Greece of the richness and

variety of British culture and to show Britain’s commercial and cultural

range, especially in growth areas such as hi-tech and financial

services.



PubliCom/Hill & Knowlton’s task was to attract corporate sponsors to the

project. and, in the later stages, to market and promote the two-week

festival.



Tactics



The agency briefed the English press in Athens and arranged for the top

300 firms in Greece, with British associations, to attend a reception at

the British Embassy in July, where the ambassador outlined the project

and appealed for commitment and support.



Once the first sponsorship commitments were secured, details of the

project and the existing sponsors were fed to the Greek press in the

hope of stimulating further interest.



In February 1995 PubliCom officially launched ‘Britain in Greece’ to the

Greek and English media. During the pre-festival build-up PubliCom

targeted the press and encouraged the TV channels to commit to covering

particular events appropriate to their audience. Independent radio and

television channel FKAI, one of the event sponsors, prepared 60-second

infomercials which were aired on television and radio.



During the festival PubliCom arranged releases and press conferences

prior to each event. All those attending the festival qualified for free

entry into a prize draw. Also eligible for entry were readers of the

national tabloid newspaper Ta Nea, which, in exchange, provided free

promotion for each days’ events.



On 18 September two London sightseeing buses and a London taxi,

promoting ‘Britain in Greece’, arrived in Athens to commence a

promotional tour around the country.



Results



By January 1995, a total of pounds 450,000 had been raised from

sponsorship of the festival. No official measure of attendance figures

are available but around 15,000 people responded to the prize draw

competition.



In the absence of official data on media coverage, Nick Chaloner,

managing director of PubliCom/Hill & Knowlton estimates that a total of

one and a half hours of television coverage was generated during the two

week festival period. All 15 daily newspapers covered the build-up and

the festival.



Verdict



The campaign captured the imagination of the media, the TV channels were

reportedly smitten by the Red Arrow fly-past, which Chaloner says was

given ‘at least five minutes air time on all six channels’.



Apparently the press coverage for ‘Britain in Greece’ has resulted in a

pile of cuttings ‘several feet high’.



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