As one in six people aged over 75 in the UK are Veterans, many within the Armed Forces community are amongst the most vulnerable to Covid-19. During this year of many challenges, the work of the Legion has never been more important.
Every year, volunteers distribute over 40 million poppies to help The Legion continue its vital work. As fewer of us travel to work, socialise or host local gatherings we will have to change how we find our Poppies, how we wear and share our Poppies and how we donate to the Legion.
Not only will how we get our Poppies be different the Legion need to stand out from the many charities in crisis who need support from the British public as the Covid crisis deepens. The communications strategy this year is therefore twofold:-
1. Build an emotional connection with the Armed Forces community, and the work of the Legion, through the 2020 Poppy Appeal.
2. Build on initial brand messaging with clear calls to action across all channels, driving supporters to call, text or visit the Legion online in order to maximise donations and poppy sales.
Every Poppy Counts
This year the legion needs to present a unified message from the Legion that not only drives awareness and emotional relevance, but also encourages individuals, communities and businesses to get behind the Poppy Appeal.
‘Every poppy counts’ conveys that this year’s appeal will be different due to Covid-19 and encourages people to get involved in ways above and beyond what they are used to; this might include ordering Poppies in the post, fundraising at home or donating online.
Build Emotional Connection Then Underpin with Clear Call to Action
With just over four weeks to November 11th, our approach is to rapidly engage the nation with the importance of the work of the Legion and how this is reflected in every single poppy. This year, more than ever, we each need to wear our poppy to support those, past and present, from across all services, who step into the breach when needed by their country.
Bringing together elements used in both pure brand and response campaigns, VCCP Media will launch the campaign with emotionally powerful long format films in high profile TV spots on ITV and C4 and then evolve the campaign later in October to become response driven. Leagas Delaney has developed creative messaging to reflect media changes over time. Working closely with Croud to deliver a multi-platform digital campaign, long format video on social platforms will also be underpinned by an evolving range of creative assets which will drive supporters to the Legion website.
The campaign launches on linear TV on October 6th with 60 second spots in The Great British Bake Off on C4 and Love Your Garden showing at the same time on ITV, reaching an estimated 7.5m adults with the first two spots. Long format video will also roll-out on all social media. By merging together the best video platforms that both TV and digital have to offer, the campaign will build coverage and frequency rapidly for brand messaging before evolving into more direct response messaging from October 12th.
Gary Ryan, director of Remembrance and marketing says: "Our marketing campaign this year, Every Poppy Counts, continues to support and drive the emotional engagement that exists between the public and the Armed Forces and therefore reinforces to everyone the importance and relevance of the Legion. We have also tried to do this by using the importance of this year’s Poppy Appeal and emphasise why you should support in any way you can, as every poppy really will count. We are grateful to VCCP Media, Leagas Delaney and Croud for working closely together with our marketing team to deliver a strong response in a very challenging market.”
VCCP Media’s executive chair Marie Oldham added: “The Royal British Legion is genuinely a part of the fabric of this nation. We need to cut through to the population of the UK and this combination of TV and digital will maximise both our emotional connection and our need to support the Poppy Appeal in new and diverse ways”