Digital UK faced a mammoth task when it had to educate the entire nation about TV aerial switchover from analogue to digital. The campaign needed to communicate with everyone and leave no one behind as this would have resulted in a loss of all TV channels.
Of the UK’s 26 million households’ 80% had to do something to their TV equipment as a result of switchover; although many were unaware of this. Digital UK was responsible for making sure switchover happened as simply and smoothly as possible and ensuring people knew what to do, and by when.
The switchover was rolled out TV region by TV region. Yorkshire switched in August 2011. The challenge in Yorkshire was to ensure 2.65m households were ready for switchover. What made the task difficult was the high proportion of ‘traditionalists’ in Yorkshire. This audience (women, 65+, C2DE, living alone) are most resistant to change and tend to be analogue viewers – therefore were those most at risk! In addition, Yorkshire has 5 TV transmitters, all of which were due to switch over on different dates.
Region-wide TV, Press and Radio were run 6 months in advance to prepare people for the switchover. A clear, uncomplicated message was then relayed through the use of outdoor advertising, enabling a true local focus.
Micro-regional TV & outdoor were prominent in delivering ‘Date awareness’ messaging with other touchpoints playing a supporting role: press, radio, roadshows, community centres, PR and door drops.
Multiple OOH formats were bought to communicate with people at every opportunity. Roadside 6 sheets, 48 sheets and 96 sheets provided blanket coverage against each transmitter. StreetTalk (BT Phone Kiosks) were utilised to penetrate town centres and more suburban areas where roadside formats didn’t have such a strong presence. Thus ensuring the message could not be missed.
Yorkshire far exceeded targets at each critical point leading up to the switchover. Outdoor had worked especially hard in Yorkshire within the multi-media mix. Outdoor proved to be 40% more efficient at driving awareness of the switchover date in Yorkshire than in other region.