In 80 percent of house fires the New Zealand Fire Service attend, working smoke alarms haven't been installed. A number far too high. We needed to get Kiwis to understand the importance of having one. But since there are pictures and messages of fires in newspapers on a daily basis, we needed to do something different to stand out.
We worked with newspapers nationwide to create the world's first ashen run. The beloved remains of burnt homes were mixed in with the black ink from their regional paper. So when readers picked up their morning paper, they were literally holding the remains of a local home devastated by fire. A tactile reminder of the horrific and all-too-common nature of house fires.
Each paper featured a harrowing and attention grabbing double page spread which emotively told the story of how the paper in their hands came to be.
The campaign ran on a single day, across 9 different publications (a total of 383,627 newspapers). And prompted a 490% increase in smoke alarm sales. The biggest uplift ever recorded in New Zealand.
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