PRWeek Corporate, City & Public Affairs Awards winners: Best Proactive Lobbying Campaign on an Issue or Cause

The winner in this category is '#LetTheMusicPlay' by Blakeney for LIVE.

This campaign urged help for the live music industry after lockdown in March, focusing on mobilising the public to influence government.

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The campaign, devised and delivered in less than a week, featured a huge joint industry letter - signed by over 5,000 artists, production crew, and venue owners - to Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden.

Media outreach urging support included specifically commissioned analysis on the employment and economic contribution of the industry - a move away from the usual focus on cultural impact. The release included quotes from major artists, from Dua Lipa to Liam Gallagher.

Artists, crew, and fans were asked to post a film or photo of the last gig they played or saw, using #LetTheMusicPlay. Global stars including The Rolling Stones, Cher, Paul McCartney, Dua Lipa and Coldplay got involved - some artist posts received over one million likes.

The campaign logo was projected onto famous venues, including Wembley, the Royal Albert Hall and The London Palladium.

Political engagement included a parliamentary briefing on a Zoom webinar for MPs and peers, which featured more music stars such as Beverley Knight and Ben Lovett from Mumford, alongside industry figures.

Coverage was in every major UK paper and broadcast outlet, and 83 countries worldwide, with the likes of Beverley Knight, KT Tunstall and Paul Weller interviewed about the campaign. #LetTheMusicPlay trended at number one globally on Twitter in the UK all day.

A £1.57bn financial package for the cultural sector was announced the following week - the sum was significantly increased to include live music. The music industry gained most from the first funding tranche in October, gaining more than 25 per cent of the fund. Meanwhile, a VAT cut was extended to include live music ticket sales.

Judge's comment:

"An excellent and powerful campaign delivered quickly and effectively. I particularly liked the empathy behind it and the common ground with the Government they tried to find."


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