With the number of natural disasters on the rise and the ongoing pandemic, the need for the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) to have a flexible workforce was greater than ever. With our sister agency Proof Strategies, we worked closely with the CRC's communications team and the Talent and Volunteer Engagement team to turn this urgent need into a national awareness and recruitment campaign.
The campaign consisted of a comprehensive recruitment outreach program designed to:
- Increase awareness and understanding of the role the Red Cross plays in communities across the country;
- inform about how every Canadian can help; and
- attract qualified candidates to apply to work or volunteer for the CRC.
What we did
With the increasing number of humanitarian crises reported in the media, it can be easy for people to think "someone has to do something" or "I hope someone does something." We had the idea of basing our creative concept around this idea, while at the same time wanting to make Quebecers think about their ability to have a positive impact in their community. We wanted to encourage Quebecers to visualize themselves as CRC employees or volunteers helping people in need, while showing them how they can BE THAT PERSON.
We worked on the development of the You Are That Person concept, which was born from the compilation of archival footage and photographs featuring real CRC volunteers, staff and beneficiaries in action. You Are That Person challenged Quebecers to visualize themselves helping people in need with the CRC and to imagine how they could make a difference.
The Proof and Capital-Image teams participated in the search for CRC employees, volunteers and beneficiaries to share their personal stories. Based on these touching stories, we approached the media to offer them the opportunity to speak with the appropriate people in their region. We also entered into a media partnership with Urbania and Narcity (both in French) and adapted the national material for Quebec.
Our media relations campaign garnered over 6.1 million media impressions in Quebec, thanks to the efforts of our team who were able to secure interviews with major media outlets including Radio-Canada, TVA and Le Quotidien.
A post-campaign evaluation showed the real impact of our multi-channel efforts. Nationally, the combined efforts of Capital-Image and its campaign partners contributed to a 126% increase in job applications, a 27% increase in the understanding of Canadian Red Cross services and a +14 point increase in awareness of the services presented (we had hoped for a +5.75 point increase).
Our message and creative not only achieved the goal of increasing people's understanding of the work of the Canadian Red Cross, but also inspired them to consider volunteering or working for the organization. In fact, many chose to apply directly for paid or volunteer positions as a direct result of our campaign.
The campaign won the GOLD award in the integrated marketing category at the 2022 North American SABRE Awards, a competition that recognizes outstanding achievement in branding, reputation and engagement.