WASHINGTON: The Common Ground Alliance (CGA), an industry organization that promotes the safety of underground gas, pipeline, power, and telecommunications facilities, has selected Fleishman-Hillard to develop and execute a national awareness campaign for the 811 "call-before-you-dig" number, set to debut next spring.
The account is in the "high six figures," said Khrysanne Kerr, project manager for CGA's 811 campaign.
In March 2005, the Federal Communications Commission approved the use of the 811 number to interface with 62 existing nationwide call centers. Those centers receive more than 20 million calls each year.
Kerr noted that the search for a firm took about four months, with several of the eight finalists being "national tier-one agencies." She added that FH's past experience with similar campaigns is what made them stand out.
"Fleishman-Hillard really seemed to focus on behavior change and really highlighted their successes on social marketing campaigns," she said. "Most importantly, [they] conveyed themselves as a partner with a sincere interest in knowing the importance and scope and safety of this campaign."
Ben Finzel, SVP at FH's Washington office, noted that the program would include research, a planning element to engage members and partners of CGA, and campaign development that will include partnerships with other organizations. The research portion, which will include focus groups, one-on-one interviews, and surveys, will begin this summer.
"Obviously the goal is to establish relevance so that people want to call," said Bette Levin, new business coordinator for FH's Mid-Atlantic region. "It's not just visibility or awareness; it's moving people to action. We really want to find what kind of messages we should shape that will actually move people into action."
Finzel said the account will be managed by the Washington office, but will also include team members from FH's St. Louis and Kansas City offices.