The National Lottery invested more than £20 million into good causes across Sunderland and Northumberland in 2017 alone.
However, after learning that not many local people, especially younger residents, knew how this money was being used to improve their communities, the organisation tasked us with changing people’s perceptions – encouraging them to associate the National Lottery with being a life-changing, force for good in their area.
We needed to shine a light on some of the North East’s inspirational lottery-backed initiatives to help residents understand the direct link between purchasing a lottery ticket and transforming their local community.
By the end of our campaign, we aimed to see a drop in the number of people who couldn’t name a single lottery-backed project in their hometown.
We knew the best way to create a meaningful change in perception was through honing in on the moving stories and outstanding local people behind different lottery-funded projects that could move residents emotionally.
To tell these stories in a creative and engaging way, we leveraged data-backed insights about our audience to form a powerful integrated PR strategy that would see our campaign messages reach local people through several different channels.
Our campaign centred on the creation of a powerful mini-film series called Untold Stories, which showcased eight lottery-backed projects and the work they are doing in their community – specifically selected for their focus on themes we knew resonated strongly with our target audiences.
The series was fronted by two local young people, who we found via a public coverage-genting search, alongside proud North East celebrities Katie Bulmer-Cooke and Pete Graves.
Each episode was shared across the National Lottery social channels, via a paid social campaign and through a media partnership with Metro Radio, in order to directly reach young people across the area. This was then amplified by a targeted media relations strategy that resulted in numerous interviews, profile slots and news stories in local broadcast, print and online media.
Our paid digital campaign smashed targets by 27% with engagement levels far above the industry average. We smashed our coverage targets by 28% and with a whopping 59 pieces of coverage and highlights included an interview on top local radio station Sun FM, multiple interviews, regular column slots and feature pieces in super-regional title The Sunderland Echo, plus a front cover with glossy local magazine ABC.
What’s more, 98% of all coverage achieved included National Lottery key messages.
By the end, we achieved a 1% drop in the number of locals who couldn’t name a single lottery backed project. We also successfully shifted perceptions towards the National Lottery and achieved a 3% rise in the number of people who associate it with being life-changing and a force for good.
“Munch impressed from the start. They got the brief, and throughout the campaign took our data and insights and constantly applied them to ensure that not only the overall strategy and media strategy would deliver, but to inform the creative execution too.
"Coupled with their tenacity and ability to work similar stories into multiple angles, we were continually able to target the same regional publications with fresh content that achieved many pieces of high quality coverage. Munch delivered excellent results in our regions, exceeding our targets and KPIs and contributed to an increase in positivity towards and awareness of our brand and the fantastic projects we fund.”
Ruairi O'Kane - National Lottery