Following the significant impact of the 2012 report from the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) into school swimming, markettiers4dc began work in February of this year to devise and develop an approach with the ASA to adequately build on the achievements to date.
The ASA undertook the largest ever school Census speaking to over 3,500 schools in England to map out the reality of school swimming in 2013. The markettiers4dc research and insight team worked with the ASA to draw out the key themes from the report, develop the content which would form the basis of the communication and help drive the messaging to the government, parents and teachers.
For national media we offered leading swimming celebrities, spokespeople and filming opportunities from an early stage to attract producers of national breakfast shows. Regionally we offered local radio and TV stations the opportunity to attend local schools and swimming pools, speak to local ASA spokespeople and where available, interview past and present Olympic swimmers who lived or trained locally. For websites unable to attend or cover the story on location themselves we pre-filmed and edited a short video news package to run on their sites.
The media outreach began several weeks in advance to ensure media requirements and issues such as filming permissions of children swimming and being interviewed could be accommodated.
The day started with ASA ambassador Sharron Davies on the BBC Breakfast sofa with live links throughout the morning to a correspondent who was poolside at a children's swimming lesson in Stockport. Simultaneously Steve Parry, Olympic medallist was at the BBC's New Broadcasting house delivering 2 hours of back to back local BBC radio interviews while a third spokesperson, Jon Glenn, Head of Youth and Community at the ASA, was on Radio 5 Live at 6am beginning a 10 hour radio interview marathon in our Farringdon studios.
Around the country BBC and ITV local crews were filming at local swimming pools as were BBC's Newsround team. The day concluded with the BBC Chief Sports correspondent Dan Roan covering the story for a package on the 6 o'clock News. The BBCs Education Correspondent wrote the story up for the corporation's website and 15 websites (to date) ran the pre edited video package we produced including Mail Online and The Independent.
In all 69 different TV & Radio programmes and websites covered the story on the day of the report's release.