Tackling Terrorism Together, the ACT multi-media campaign

by Gabby Holdsworth

The fear of terrorism has reached its highest with numerous attacks across the world gaining attention to all those who have access to a phone, TV or a newspaper.  2016 witnessed the Brussel bombings, the Orlando nightclub shootings, the France Nice attacks and many more which has caused an outbreak of worry and leaving the UK with a threat level for international terrorism as severe.

To try and tackle the problem, The National Police Chief Councils have recently launched an ACT (Action Counters Terrorism) campaign to encourage the public to try and help tackle terrorism in the UK.

Organisations have now realised to get their message out there to wide number of people and to change their opinions you have to be able to successfully use a wide number of communication channels.

This new campaign which has spent £750,000 consists of multiple channels being used. ACT campaign features a page on the GOV.UK website, posters, podcasts and films which are being promoted on YouTube and Facebook to try and target different audiences.

The people in charge of the campaign launched an event in Manchester and told the media that 13 potential terror attacks have been stopped by British Police in the past four years.

MediaCom carried out research for the campaign to find people’s attitudes towards counter-terror policing, finding —

  • 73 per cent of people are concerned about terrorism
  • 26 per cent said they might not report suspicions in case they wasted police time
  • 29 per cent being worried their suspicions were wrong
  • 39 per cent due to being unsure what suspicious behaviour looks like

The main aim is to try and alter the way in which people think towards terror and anti-terror policing. The campaign will be evaluated against future data to see if public opinion has changed.

The use of multi- channels has become incredibly popular over the last couple of years and it has been found that in 2017, video content will represent 74% of all internet traffic. As more people are attracted to visual posts, the campaign have had to change the way they connect with their audience. Companies have now realised that the public will no longer read long pieces of text and have to make their campaigns stand out for them to work.

The ACT campaign has successfully used a wide range of channels to try and get their message out there. But how successful will this truly be? Despite using Facebook as a way to promote the video, they have stuck to traditional posters and have not used social media channels such as Twitter to connect and interact with their audience.

This is not the first counter-terrorism campaign, back in 2016 a Counter Terrorism Awareness Week was held which was to try and make people aware of what they can do to try and help tackle the problem. During this campaign they used various hashtags such as #CTAW2016 and #CounterTerrorismUK. During this time, they created a Twitter page to promote the cause and shared posters of who to contact if in doubt.

It can be quite a challenge for organisations to use every single communication channel but it will be interesting to see how successful this campaign is now it has created videos and shared them online.

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