I think we all feel a collective sense of pride when we see creativity and humour used well in local promotions. I’ve collated some of the best local branded content that’s come to my attention this week. Let me know if you agree and if there’s any crackers I’ve missed out!
Press Features: Age NI
Charities such as Age NI are often accused of having an “easy time” when lobbying and campaigning on hard societal issues because they garner public support, which in turn pricks the media attention and then puts pressure on local government to act. However, when it comes to good news and positivity, these organisations can find it really difficult to gain the exposure required to balance their image and ensure they are known for more than Doomsday stories.
Age NI created a lovely feature in the local press highlighting “centenarians” with a great mix of positive sentiment and hard statistics. When promoted on their Facebook page it then garnered over 400 Likes, comments and shares for even greater awareness raising.
Social Media: PSNI
The Police Service of Northern Ireland also have to balance their public engagement on social media with the right mix of positive promotion and strong safety messages. The temptation would be to re-hash the same old public campaign images but PSNI Ballymena have really utilised the image-centric nature of engagement on social media by creating this photograph in a local setting that shows their branding and their people, as well as highlighting a safety message in a unique and creative way.
It has also received over 65 Likes, comments and shares on Facebook alone. Lucky they arranged it on one of our two sunny days per year (sarcasm intended!)
Direct Marketing: Power NI
The corporate giant that was NI Electricity hasn’t always been known for aesthetically pleasing or inventive promotional materials but they’re clearly upping their game with the recent direct mail flyer which is not only colourful and personalised (in this case, to my friend’s husband) but it’s also humorous and off-the-wall enough to encourage you to read it before you bin it (*ahem* I mean recycle it, of course!)
Where it falls down is that the catch message has been described as only loosely related to the content message - something along the lines of squirreling away savings by switching to paperless billing - but I still like that it worked enough to peak interest in what is a congested letterbox these days. Job well done.
Advertising: Phoenix Natural Gas
Another big brand here has had great success with colloquial advertising recently. Phoenix Natural Gas’ #JimandJean characters play on local phrases to induce positive sentiment for a brand that no doubt wants to be seen as Northern Ireland’s local gas supplier as the market diversifies and competition increases.
Their Giro d’Italia poster’s use of the phrase “on yer bike” was also extremely popular with the public on social media and this latest one (which I happily pass every day on my work commute) is in a similar vein with a great World Cup tie-in to the NI football team’s traditional chant “we’re not Brazil, we’re Northern Ireland!”