TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards 2017: BCITO breaks ground to increase apprentice numbers

The challenge

In 2016, New Zealand’s building industry was in crisis. With a boom in construction, but a chronic shortage of construction apprentices, BCITO found itself flying in tradies from across the globe to meet the demand, a stop-gap measure at best.

Compounding this, feedback from the industry was that candidates coming through weren’t of a high enough standard.

So, BCITO needed a way to hook potential apprentices, particularly school leavers, because New Zealand needed apprentices who were educated, up to the job and driven to succeed. 

The response

Research with partner agencies hit upon the idea of a month-long campaign employing digital, social, traditional and earned media channels, something which represented a major gear shift for the conservative, not-for-profit, and government-appointed body.

Gear shift or not, BCITO threw itself and its entire marketing budget behind the ‘Not Your Average…Shed’ campaign.

It was a challenge whereby a team of apprentices were assembled and given the mission of very publically building a “multifunctional, hi-tech entertainment pod”.

The high-traffic Sylvia Park shopping centre was selected as the location.

“What a challenge!,” says BCITO. “BCITO is a traditionally conservative organisation, so this was a big step out of our comfort zone – it just had to work.”

Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat were all utilised as channels for the generated content, directly targeting the youth market as well as their parents who are key influencers on their offspring’s career choices. 

Radio, digital, social and print served to amplify the message via promotions utilising media brands and personalities. 

The results

The leap of faith paid off, with BCITO dramatically exceeding its expectations and targets, almost tripling its quality registrations year-on-year, doubling conversions and slashing its cost per registration.

The activation captured attention with over 3000 people visiting and engaging at the Sylvia Park site over the course of a month. On-site surveyed sentiment was recorded at 99 percent positive.

Facebook reach and engagement was exceptional with 330 ‘hot’ leads and 110 ‘cold’ leads generated and a strong conversion rate of 3.1 percent. The campaign drove PR interest producing 27 print articles, 12 online articles, six broadcast pieces including TVNZ Breakfast and TV3’s Story, with a total earned media reach of 4,991,019 people across New Zealand.

Registrations nearly tripled year-on-year, with 2016 doubling the conversion rate of 2015 and cost per registration dropping 30 percent.

“We learned that when you get a bunch of passionate people together and invest in a shared vision, anything is possible,” says BCITO. 

Marketing Initiative
Not Your Average Shed
Company Name
Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO)
Judge’s comment
“In a very strong category, this entry really stood out. We congratulate them on leading with insight and tackling the perception of ‘trades are for dummies’. They achieved astounding results and provided some great analytics to support these achievements. The combination of a really strong creative idea and great execution made this an easy winner for us.”
Marketing Partners
Cansino & Co., Brand Spanking, Uprise Digital, CMB Marketing, Acumen PR, Licensed Renovations
New Zealand Red Cross, Paralympics New Zealand, The Trusts 

  • This story will also appear in the Awards issue of NZ Marketing. 
  • To read more on the TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards 2017, click here.

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