The Portland team have been busy this week launching a new campaign on behalf of the Scouting Association aimed at raising awareness of high rent and rate increases inflicted on them by local authorities around the country. Some of the increases threaten local Scout groups with closure or massive rises in subs and cuts to activities.
Portland worked on devising and planning an integrated campaign for three months before launch, working with the Scouts to target broadcast, national and regional press, specialist publications and the digital space. A dedicated microsite has been set up to host materials that inform Scouts and their families how to campaign at a grassroots level, providing a toolkit of petition, letters and posters for them to get involved.
Day one of launch saw the press getting firmly behind the campaign with mentions on BBC1 Breakfast, Radio Five Live and articles in The Times, The Daily Telegraph, Independent I and The Herald. The online world was buzzing not just from Scouts tweeting about the campaign, encouraging visits to the website to sign the petition, but from online news outlets including BBC, The Daily Mirror, The Daily Mail, London Evening Standard, and numerous blogs covering the spending cuts and big society debates.
Bear Grylls, writing in The Times:
“Young people I meet don’t lack ambition, they just lack opportunities to get out there and live a bit. And that’s what the Scouts provide. It’s one of the greatest youth movements in society, a giant force for good… I urge people to join me in the battle for the Scouts’ survival”.
He also appeared in a YouTube video to encourage social sharing of the campaign.
Our favourite headline? The Herald wins in our book with: “Scout of Order”.