Surrey Together engages teenagers through community-based sites

Harvest Digital plans ‘Surrey Together’ campaign on Faceparty and Piczo

LONDON 6 September, 2006… Surrey Police and Surrey County Council have appointed Harvest Digital to manage a digital advertising campaign designed to encourage teenagers living in the county to participate in their local community. The online marketing agency has planned and negotiated a highly-targeted creative and media strategy using banner advertising on community-based sites such as Faceparty and Piczo.

The creative uses photographic imagery in skyscraper and MPU formats and encourages teenagers to take pictures of Surrey as they experience it then upload them to . Built by the police, the website will develop with user-generated content uploaded by young people across the county during the six week campaign.

Photographs uploaded to the site will be rated by other visitors with a shortlist of the top twenty presented to a judging panel who will select winners. Prizes include digital cameras, high-street vouchers, a day as a newspaper photographer and the chance to photograph backstage at a gig and a major sporting event.

Nick Cloke, Surrey Police Press & Publicity Officer explains: ‘Surrey Together is an initiative which aims to make everyone feel safe on the streets by working with young people rather than against them. We want to change the negative attitude some people have towards young people by showing the area from their point of view. However, teenagers are hard to reach through traditional advertising channels. We decided to combine targeted cinema and poster advertising, with direct mail and online advertising – selecting Harvest Digital to manage the digital outreach.’

Mike Teasdale, Director at Harvest Digital comments: ‘We were briefed to reach a highly-targeted demographic of 14-19 year olds living in Surrey with an interest in digital photography. Our solution was to buy media by postcode on popular community-based sites where users upload and interact with their own photos from their digicam or mobile phone.

‘This is more specialised and innovative than using behavioural targeting or planning a campaign based on IP addresses. User-generated sites like Faceparty have a large and fast growing audience, especially amongst teenagers, and offer fantastic demographic targeting possibilities, particularly by age and postcode, but also by interest. Set against this, some users see their page within a community site as an extension of their own personal space - rather like their email inbox - and may be quite resistant to advertising. That's one reason why we've worked very hard to ensure that the communication will be as relevant as possible to the target audience.”

The success of the campaign will be judged by tracking the response to the advertising in terms of visits to the Surrey Together site and the number of visitors who upload a photo as well as the amount and quality of content generated.

About Surrey Together

The Surrey Together initiative was launched in September 2005 to work with young people rather than against them and to address unfounded negative opinions about young people.

There are four teams working in different areas of Surrey, each consisting of a police sergeant, three police community support officers, a Surrey County Council youth development personal advisor and trading standards officer.

Travelling in distinctive yellow and blue vans with the Surrey Together logo, the teams visit residential neighbourhoods, making direct contact with teenagers and other people affected by antisocial behaviour. The teams visit schools, colleges and youth centres to encourage young people to get involved in constructive activities, such as the photo competition this summer.

About Harvest Digital

Harvest Digital was formed in 2001 as a full-service online marketing agency specialising in data-driven, commercially modelled customer acquisition and retention programmes. The company is privately owned by staff, and the three agency principles, Mike Teasdale, William Corke and Emma Wilson, have backgrounds in Online marketing, Direct marketing, Media, Advertising and Sales Promotion.

Based in Soho, Harvest’s clients include Norwich Union, Auto Trader, 3M UK, Zopa, Shelter, and CMC Markets.

For further information please contact:

Joanna Burton
Head of PR
Harvest Digital
t: 020 7479 7500

Mike Teasdale
Harvest Digital
t: 020 7479 7502

Nick Cloke
Press & Publicity Officer
Surrey Police
t: 01483 482321

Published on: 12:00AM on 6th September 2006