To help address the labour shortage and get the food to market, several farming associations collaborated to recruit locals for a modern-day “land army.” As part of this “Feed the Nation” campaign, they sought out students as well as people who had been furloughed or lost their jobs because of the coronavirus.
Greenlight Digital wanted to help with the recruitment drive. When employees read about the farmers’ struggles in the news, they were motivated and offered to volunteer their creative and marketing expertise. “We started to contact these associations to say, ‘Hey guys, do you want any help with an awareness campaign?’” says Matt Garbutt, creative director at Greenlight Digital. “We felt like we could do something about it, even if organically just to raise a bit of awareness.”
A full-service digital and commerce agency founded in 2001, Greenlight Digital is built on the twin practices of data and creativity to provide digital marketing, website build, data science, creative and other services to help brands delight their customers and reach new audiences. In 2019, the London-based company of 170 people was recognised for its innovation when it was named Growth Hacker of the Year at the Microsoft Advertising Regional Partner Awards.
For the “Feed the Nation” campaign, employees were inspired by World War II posters that mobilised citizens to support the war effort. Those posters encouraged people to “Dig for Victory” by growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens and becoming part of a land army to pick crops. “Our idea was to bring those posters into the modern day,” Garbutt says. “We used a similar headline, which started as ‘Pick for the People.’”
Marta Colmenero, senior digital designer at Greenlight Digital, used the World War II posters as the basis for a colourful poster that encouraged people to harvest apples, asking “Can you help?” The agency then promoted it on organic search and social media.
In April 2020, the British government got involved to centralise and promote the campaign, building a microsite where people could sign up to work and renaming the campaign “Pick for Britain.” That programme includes the National Farmers Union; Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board; Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs; Association of Labour Providers; and British Growers.
As Greenlight Digital continued to help with the campaign, it created posters for strawberries and lettuce, adopting the new “Pick for Britain” slogan. The organic and social traffic drove visitors to the new microsite. The campaign has led to the hiring of a range of workers, from students to carpenters and chefs.