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Case study: Hertfordshire County Council’s Covid campaign

Hertfordshire County Council recently launched Play Your Part, Stay Safe Hertfordshire which is high-profile, public information campaign, playing a key for our reassurance section within the Local Outbreak Plan.

A campaign toolkit has been produced for use by all partners (including health, police and district councils) which has already been shared extensively and with some really positive results. Hertfordshire County Council have been working closely with those teams to consider how all districts and other partners can best share these messages in a prominent manner, and localise or make bespoke across individual organisations’ channels. The content of this toolkit is being increased and reviewed regularly for its effectiveness, particularly from a Public Health perspective.

The aim of the first stage of the campaign is to encourage Hertfordshire residents to take personal responsibility for protecting their communities by carrying out four simple actions:

  • Washing their hands
  • Socially distancing
  • Wearing face coverings where required
  • Isolating and getting tested if they develop symptoms

The imagery and accompanying messaging is being delivered by community role models/key workers – doctors, care workers, refuse collectors; and those working in places we know our residents value – pubs, cafes and hairdressers. We launched the campaign with a number of high-profile adverts in all our local newspapers – as well as delivering a ‘virtual’ press conference to promote the campaign and encourage ‘responsible reporting’ in the event of a local outbreak.

We have also used a high number of free and paid for outdoor advertising sites (eg bus shelters) as well as some targeted paid for social media adverts. We have also done special e-newsletters to over 100,000 residents and dedicated text messages to over 20,000 school parents. We’ve also managed to secure VMS (Highways) sign messages in prominent places and will be utilising other places of high-footfall such as Libraries and posters in shops or pubs.

This is just the start of our week-by-week proactive – and preventative – activity, being delivered in Hertfordshire. This is in addition to us putting in place planned activity – by the different levels of a local outbreak – including some lessons from other areas, such as: pre-planned messages, geo-targeting of social media activity and consideration for the production of materials in different languages.

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