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RNLI ‘Beach Smart’ campaign aims to keep families safe at the seaside

Friday July 18, 2014 at 1:55pm
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is launching an integrated Beach Smart campaign aimed at getting 17,500 UK families beach savvy before they head for the seaside on their holidays. The campaign will supply families with key safety information when they need it most and will also attempt to raise awareness of the charity’s work in this area. In a typical summer, the RNLI not only rescues thousands of people at sea around the UK coasts, but also provides lifeguard services on over 200 beaches in the UK. In 2013 alone, the charity helped over 9,500 children, 741 of which were saved from dangerous rip currents around our coastlines. The first wave of activity launches next week on July 24th 2014 with targeted display advertising, an online game and a bespoke microsite, before rolling out with additional direct mail, outdoor, press and experiential activity across the peak summer months. One of the key methods of engagement is the Beach Smart game, which will be hosted online at www.beachsmart.org/earn (fully mobile optimised and live from July 24th). In the game, children are given a number of small challenges to complete across three different levels. Players are asked to help the characters swim between the flags with some simple mouse controls, put safety flags in the right place on the beach or click on lone children to get them buddied up with a friend before they enter the water. The RNLI will be using the game to start an ongoing dialogue with parents by encouraging them to register their contact details on completion. As a compelling value exchange mechanic, each child registered will receive a free Beach Smart pack in the mail with an activity booklet and a fun ‘snapband’ (which comes in three different ‘RNLI’ colours). The pack also includes a waterproof pen, so as well as being a must-have accessory for kids, the wristbands can also double up as identity bracelets – allowing parents to write their contact details on the inside. Experiential activity will focus on five UK shopping centres for the duration of August, with weekend face painting, Beach Smart themed temporary tattoos, and an opportunity to play the game on site. Volunteers will also be on hand to dispense safety advice for parents and kids as they pass through. In addition to equipping parents and children with vital information that could help save lives, the RNLI will also use this contact with a new, younger audience as a data capture opportunity for future support and fundraising. Russell Tarr, interim head of marketing at the RNLI, says: “This innovative campaign is a great way for the RNLI to encourage children and their families to think about beach safety. Although we have lifeboats all around the coast on call 24/7 and lifeguards on 200 of the busiest beaches, it’s always better for families if they don’t need to call on our volunteer crews and lifeguards. Through this campaign we are encouraging people to have fun this summer while staying safe.” Creative agency Proximity London is behind the campaign strategy, concept and execution (including the development of the online game and microsite, plus all visual and printed materials). The supporting media strategy is being handled by media partner OMD. Proximity is the charity’s designated acquisition marketing agency, specialising in delivering fundraising communications across on and offline channels.
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