Third Sector Awards: Communications Campaign of the Year - #ClapForOurCarers

Awarded to a charity for a highly successful, innovation or inspiring communications campaign.

What was the aim of the campaign?

When Annemarie Plas came up with the idea of encouraging a show of appreciation for the carers who were helping people get through the Covid-19 pandemic, she probably didn’t realise how it could capture the attention of the nation.

What started as an invitation to take part in a simple act of gratitude, grew to become a national shared experience every Thursday evening at 8pm, under the banner of Clap For Our Carers. The primary aim of the campaign was to unite communities in raising awareness of and showing nationwide appreciation for the UK’s committed, but often under-valued carers.

What was the approach?

Annemarie Plas initially sent out a simple social post inviting friends and family to join her in applauding carers on 26th March 2020. This post went viral and ended up in front of agency Creative Clinic.

Moved and excited by the idea, the agency reached out to Plas offering its creative services free of charge to develop the brand and use digital media to amplify the message.

It offered to design a logo and to create brand assets and collateral for the campaign, which extended to a website, downloadable social media assets, printable posters, and kids’ activities. The agency provided ongoing brand strategy and ran the brand’s social channels.

After the first week’s focus on frontline NHS workers, the theme extended to all essential key workers in the second week, and later to children who were stuck at home during lockdown and everyone who was abiding by its terms.

What did the campaign achieve?

Over ten weeks more and more people participated, increasing social media reach and media coverage. This was achieved with zero spend, due to an abundance of goodwill, generosity, partnerships, and organic support. 

National broadcasters carried the applause live for nine weeks. The social media reach  included: 413.3 million TikTok views; 553,000 impressions on Instagram, and 1.4 million impressions on Twitter. The campaign was shared and supported by leading figures. 

The campaign was hugely successful in raising awareness of, and pride in, the vital roles that frontline NHS and key workers play during and beyond the crisis, and encouraging people to share appreciation and respect. It also helped raise awareness of NHS Charities Together.

Plans are now in place to establish an annual Clap For Our Carers day beginning in 2021.

What the judges said

“This is a fantastic example of a responsive, evolving, unplanned campaign and it’s very impressive to see what was achieved with zero budget – a campaign which became known in every household across the UK and brought to life a concept which brought hope to us all.”

Highly commended

Water Aid for #BathroomSessions

Different Kettle for Don’t be Fooled by a Smile

Finalists 

Sense for Sense Sign School 

Macmillan Cancer Support for The Forgotten C

Age UK for We Are Undefeatable

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