The challenge of marketing Children's Services

With calls for significant change in Children's Services, creating strong and impactful marketing campaigns to raise awareness of sensitive issues is more important than ever.

With a child in the UK now being referred to Children's Services for help every 49 seconds and an anticipated £2bn funding gap expected by 2020, it's clear to see why service providers are shouting about a major industry crisis. However, the much anticipated Narey and Owers review published on 6 February paints a more positive picture whilst still making significant recommendations for change.

The facts are that the number of children being taken into care is at an all-time high, with 53,420 children living with foster families on 31 March 2017, but the number of foster carers is falling. A typical foster carer is now over 50 years old and numerous lifestyle factors mean they are not being replaced by younger generations as they retire. It's estimated that around 6,000 new foster carers are needed in England alone.

It's clear that it's now more important than ever for fostering service providers to invest in highly effective marketing and communications strategies to deal with everything from crisis management, to recruitment and ongoing engagement with their carers.

Children's Services is one of the cornerstones of Superdream's business and we've been working with brands across the industry (and the globe) from our inception. We fully understand the challenge of balancing strong and impactful creative with a sensitive message to drive awareness of issues that can be controversial. So how have we achieved this?

Enhancing public awareness of foster care in Australia

Using a viral social experiment and integrated marketing and communications campaign, we drew attention to the 43,000 children needing care in Australia. Our highly emotive content generated over 167 million online impressions and significant media coverage in 13 countries, spreading our message worldwide.
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Putting fostering on the agenda at Christmas

Christmas is overwhelmingly associated with family, but for fostering service providers this can be the hardest time to find a child a family home. Over Christmas 2017 we implemented an integrated campaign aimed at existing foster carers, and as a result 15% more placements were found compared to the previous year.
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"Crisis on your doorstep" campaign

In March 2017 we launched the "Crisis on your doorstep" creative campaign focused on drawing attention to the fact that the fostering problem is more localised than people think. The campaign used fostering statistics in geographically targeted locations to make people aware of the problem and how they could make a difference. From March - December 2017 we saw a 15% uplift in enquiries compared to the same period in 2016 and an increase in the quality of these enquiries, with more people making appointments after the initial enquiry.

In this challenging and complex environment our expertise and industry knowledge can help make a real difference. If you'd like to talk about how Superdream can help you make the most impact from your marketing budget please get in touch on 01527 573770 or email hello@superdream.co.uk.

Posted by:

Katherine Hawkley

Senior Account Manager

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