CAMPAIGNS: PERSONAL FINANCE; Financial plans for old age

Client: Falcon Group Plc PR Team: Carrington Hide Communications Campaign: To launch and generate enquiries for FalconCare, insurance and financial planning for the costs of elderly long term care Timing: March 995 - December 1995 Cost: pounds 5,000

Client: Falcon Group Plc

PR Team: Carrington Hide Communications

Campaign: To launch and generate enquiries for FalconCare, insurance and

financial planning for the costs of elderly long term care

Timing: March 995 - December 1995

Cost: pounds 5,000



Early last year Bristol-based financial adviser Falcon Group saw a

market opportunity for insurance policies to cover the costs of

residential long-term care for the elderly.



Since the Community Care Act 1993, responsibility for caring for old

people who cannot live independently has passed from the National Health

Service to local authorities. Homes and savings that were intended to be

passed on to children and grandchildren are being swallowed up to pay

for long-term care.



In response the Falcon Group began to offer advice on care cost in old

age; a service branded as Falcon Care.



Demographic and regional trends make FalconCare particularly topical.



By the year 2000 it is estimated that there will be 1.2 million people

over 85, and this figure is set to double in the following 40 years.



Falcon Group’s client base is primarily located in the south and west,

regions popular for retirement and therefore receptive to the ideas

behind FalconCare.



Objectives



Increase awareness of the probability of having to fund long-term care

for the elderly from personal and family resources. Promote FalconCare

as the ideal vehicle for planning for care costs, and avoiding having to

pawn property to look after granny. To get FalconCare treated by the

media as another key part of financial planning, on a par with

mortgages, pensions and insurance.



Tactics



Carrington Hide commissioned a survey by Omnimas to show that 49 per

cent of FalconCare’s target customers, the over-50s, were unaware that

long-term care is means tested.



The findings were press released in mid-June, a slow time where news is

concerned. The campaign culminated in a seminar on planning for old

age, held in conjunction with the Western Daily Press in Bristol on 4

December.



Results



Over 100 people in their 50s attended Falcon’s lunch time seminar - a

good turnout for an insurance sales pitch.



According to Quita Morgan, who covered the seminar for the Western Daily

Press, ‘most people seemed very happy with what they heard.’



In the months leading up to the seminar Falcon had 1000 requests for

long-term care leaflets, and a company director was interviewed by

three regional radio stations for a total of one hour.



Work during the summer yielded a reasonable amount of media

coverage,which included a feature by freelance writer Tom Tickell for

the Daily Telegraph’s affluent elderly readership.



Verdict



The campaign achieved both good coverage and tangible sales results on a

low budget. The launch of FalconCare was the first time that ten-year-

old Falcon had used a PR consultancy and as they have retained

Carrington Hide’s services, they are clearly pleased with the outcome.

Hide has used his background in financial services PR to skilfully tie

in regional sales demands in the south west for FalconCare policies, to

growing national awareness of long-term care costs.



These costs were addressed in the November 1995 budget and a recent

MINTEL survey and are now a staple of the personal finance pages,

demonstrating the timeliness and, to some extent, the penetration of

Carrington Hide’s campaign. From a low cost base of just pounds 5,000,

Carrington Hide has prepared the ground for extensive media coverage of

long-term care - not the world’s most instantly appealing subject, which

will surely bring long-term PR gains to the company’s financial services

clients.



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