PR Poppy Success – ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’


‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’ created by Paul Cummins.

The picture says it all. A sea of poppies draped across and below the the iconic Tower of London is a spectacular sight. Created by ceramic artist Paul Cummins, with setting by stage designer Tom Piper. It has and will attract thousands of people, marking one hundred years since the first full day of Britain’s involvement in the First World War. Each poppy represents a British military fatality during the war and the ceramic poppies will fill the moat around the tower progressively over the summer. By Remembrance Day on Nov 11th the moat will be full of 888, 246 poppies bought by the general public.

The event attracts it’s usual tourists but also Londoners who want to witness this spectacular event in their hometown.

In PR terms it could not be anymore of a clever blend. Creating something visually fantastic and also including one of London’s biggest landmarks is an instant newsworthy event for not only national but global media. Creating something this eye catching gives a great promotion to all the charities involved and London as a city in general. It also has a great active involvement with its audience. You can plant and buy your own poppy as part of paying your respects and volunteers are there each day to add the poppies to the installation. By doing this the event has created a way for the audience to feel involved with something that has become a global talking point and gives an instant visual satisfaction. All proceeds of the poppies are then to be shared amongst a variety of military charities.

Providing a reflective space for the public to stop and remember those who lost their lives in the First World War.

Providing a reflective space for the public to stop and remember those who lost their lives in the First World War.

Social media also has a huge involvement and the event of course has created a #hashtag. This gives the audience the opportunity to hare images of their installation and their own poppy once it has been planted into the ground – #TowerPoppies

It is also possible to buy a ceramic poppy to pay your respects online, by creating this opportunity it diminishes any geographical boundaries and allows buyers to take part from all over the world. Even though the Poppy Appeal is a well known and supported appeal already nationally, this has raised the appeals profile globally. Clever marketing, great PR and a historic landmark seems to me to be a very successful mix.

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Body Confidence Week | #BeReal Campaign

Last week was the first ever ‘Body Confidence Week’ (13-19th October)  which saw the launch of Dove’s recent campaign ‘Be Real: Body Confidence for Everyone’. The beauty brand has teamed up with a number of charities and businesses in order to launch this campaign. Be Real aims to unite schools, business, charities and public bodies to change attitudes about body image. Be Real was also formed in response to the Reflections on Body Image report from the All Party Parliamentary Group for Body Image.

The Body Confidence Awards 2014 were hosted by Jameela Jamil and Gok Wan.

The Body Confidence Awards 2014 were hosted by Jameela Jamil and Gok Wan.

The Body Confidence Awards were held by APPG and supported by Dove at London’s House of Commons at the end of the last week, which saw Jameela Jamil and Gok Wan host the awards. Jameela Jamil is most well-known as the current Radio 1 Chart Show host and also a columnist for Company Magazine. She talked about the pressures the media put on women to look or fulfill a certain stereotype. She talked about how the media are a integral part of this ‘perfect image’ we seem to prescribe onto women and finally she also talked about how we shouldn’t stand for it. Jameela’s own experience when taking over The Chart Show from Reggie Yates shows how the media focuses on nothing but image. In her first three months she gained 200,00 listeners to the show as the first female host ever, a huge accomplishment for not only herself but a women as an authoritative role within the media.

Confidence is the key to happiness.

She later realized that it wasn’t in the media’s top intrests to print stories about a recently high achieving women and instead the various newspapers and magazines decided to focus on Jameela’s recent weight gain. It’s appalling to think that still today, women successes are being judged or ignored due to the way they look. Her speech honestly gave me the chills and ever sentence spoke was nothing but the truth of what women go through each day in order to step outside the door.

My opinion is today, women should be confident with the way they look. It shouldn’t be normal to feel like each time you step out the door you are being judged on how you were created. It seems that we all strive to be ‘different’ and ‘unique’ in this world in so many other aspects of our lives. So why cant our bodies be seen as unique too. Fashion is seen to be experimental and accepts that different people dress in different ways. So, let us understand this too, different people have different bodies.

Dove felt that social media was the best way to raise awareness and also gain access to a range of ages and demographics.Dove have supported the #BeReal campaign with a social media hash-tag for you to get involved. The campaign may not change the media bashing women on the way they look but it might just tell the next generation that it’s ok to look like you.

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