To commemorate 100 years since the start of World War One, the National Apprenticeship Service, with support from the Armed Forces decided to host a centenary event on board HMS St Albans, a working naval battleship. We were tasked with organising and promoting the event.
Moored alongside HMS Belfast on the Thames, the unique event location offered on HMS St Albans, high-profile speakers, including Nick Boles, Minister for Skills, Terry Morgan CBE, Chairman of Crossrails and showcase of work from apprentices was set to generate buzz and interest amongst employers and stakeholders. However we wanted to create a campaign around the event, extending its reach to many more people than the 200+ guests at the event. Adopting a 90/10 rule, we placed greater focus on the PR and social media amplification around the event. We commissioned two reports; a Cebr report and a historical paper on apprenticeships. The Cebr report showcased the economic impact of apprenticeships to date, and looking forward, made a projection on the contribution of apprentices in the next 50 years. The historical report revealed the make-up of apprenticeships in 1914, and compared the findings to apprenticeships today. Both pieces of research, gave us rich content for media relations and social media engagement, allowing us to convey a compelling narrative that married both the centenary message and our wider apprenticeship objectives.
The event received applauds from senior figures across government, the Armed Forces, stakeholders and employers - and the short film we created specifically for the occasion was awarded finalist position at the New York Film Festival, in the CSR category. With media coverage across key business titles, regional and trade press, we were able to reach 40 percent of the UK population. Social engagement secured over 3.4 million impression across channels including Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Storify and Vine, generating 1,389 mentions of the research and hashtag across platforms.
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