Aberfield was appointed to work with Calderdale College to promote its Skills Support for the Workforce programme. The programme works in conjunction with Local Enterprise Partnerships, stakeholders and local training providers across the UK to support the upskilling of low-skilled, low-wage employees.
The campaign specifically targeted those working in growth or priority sectors, which varied by region, as well as those in sectors with significant skills gaps.
Our brief was to reach and engage with SME’s, according to the region’s target sectors, skills gaps and key industries. The campaign covered five regions across the UK, including North Yorkshire and East Riding, Greater Lincolnshire and Black Country. We were required to raise awareness of the programme and motivate and influence businesses to access the training programme. The success of the campaign was to be evaluated using website visits and learner numbers.
The campaign was designed to get as many businesses and learners signed up as possible, so in-depth audience research was conducted to identify the channels that the identified audience most commonly used. Our research informed the tactics we used, which included a mix of online and offline advertorial content, stakeholder engagement, case studies and social content, as well as more traditional PR.
Sector and industry-specific content was produced for each area and focused on local growth clusters identified by Local Enterprise Partnerships. The content directly addressed the challenges and barriers to employee development as well as business growth and productivity. Each piece of content included a clear call to action for the audience to access the programme and enrol in skills courses.
Over an 8-month period, we reached over 2.4 million people, resulting in 9,000 web visits and 7,855 enrolled learners across 2,178 businesses. Learners spanned a range of sectors and industries and those that engaged with the programme ranged from one-person self-employed micro-businesses through to employees at SMEs such as Victoria Plum.
Following the success of the campaign, Aberfield is providing marcomms support for the rollout of the Skills Support for the Workforce programme in Tees Valley and York, North Yorkshire and East Riding, after the college secured a further 2 years of multi-million-pound funding.