RoAR: Rock Against Racism
An Impressionable Age
New Zealand’s drinking culture is fast becoming a central concern, and we continue to see high-profile cases of youth binge-drinking ending in tragedy. Below are a few statistics from ALAC’s website that substantiate the need to publically address this growing issue:
Our teenage years are when we start to develop attitudes and habits that set the direction for later life and messages targeted at this impressionable age could prove effective. The challenge however, is that communicating with teenagers can be difficult and ‘authority voices’ are largely met with resistance. Messages must be carefully crafted to reach out to them on a level that they can relate to.
Mobilising a Young Audience
In 2008, the Scottish Government used radio to rally 14- 25 year olds behind an equally serious issue, in this instance it was an anti-racism campaign. For many young people music is an actual part of their identity, a comfort zone in which music presenters and DJs become trusted friends. Music Radio provided the perfect platform for the Scottish Government to reach youth on their own level without patronising or alienating them.
RoAR (Rock Against Racism) was a live music tour which visited four venues across Scotland. Created in association with the Bauer Radio Group, the tour was promoted on-air and online with twenty weeks of promotions, live reads, a major competition to win the chance to open for the headliners, and station website links pushing visitors to Bauer Radio’s dedicated RoAR microsite.
This multiplatform Radio campaign delivered incredibly high levels of audience involvement reaching 75% of the target audience and successfully driving them to the official event website. Over the course of the 20 weeks, the site attracted 32,000 hits with over 1,000 music acts registering to win.
Most importantly, the campaign debate on the site's “Why I’m rocking against racism” and “Have your say” sections generated over 8,000 messages. The campaign was rewarded for its success at the 2008 Media Week Awards where it won Best Sales Pitch Niche under 250k
But the effects of the campaign have lasted much longer. RoAR has now become a regular annual fixture on the Scottish events calendar, attracting youth attendees from across Great Britain in a united show of support against racism.
“The challenge for the Scottish Government was not to portray themselves as preaching and by using radio they were able to meet young people and discuss the issues on their own term. RoAR avoided the pitfalls often associated with “worthy” campaigns by forging a strong link between subject matter and audience” – Radio Advertising Bureau 2008