Chester Zoo elephant keeper
Student/PR

Creative Campaigns #16 – Chester Zoo Wants You To Play With The Elephants

Anyone who knows me knows how much of a big fan I am of Chester Zoo. “The Secret Life Of The Zoo” is a staple evening-watch of mine, and I just love everything that the brand stands for. Therefore, I’m equally as intrigued and invested in the way in which they market themselves, both online and offline.

And their most recent press campaign really piqued my interest.

Achieving widespread coverage, Chester Zoo recently announced they’re looking for somebody to join them to help to look after their elephants. A dream job for most, to be presumed. Of course, this kind of opening attracted a lot of attention on both social media and in the press, but that’s not what I find most interesting about this campaign…

Would You Want To Spend Your Day With Elephants?

For the most part, the answer is yes. That’s what makes this campaign brilliant first and foremost.

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Most of us love animals. I think when a lot of us were little, ‘zookeeper’, was amongst our top-choice jobs. (It was for me, anyway). And this neat little story reignites that to an extent. Because realistically, you’d need more qualifications and experience than a deep love for animals, but nevertheless, it’s a nice job position to engage with. It even had me considering applying.

The headlines grab you… “It Could Be YOU!” Has us all thinking “well yeah, I guess it could be me”. And thus, this campaign is not only one that’s attracted attention in the media, but it’s also provoked the interest of the public too.

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But let’s talk about the other practical benefits of this creative campaign too, and what makes it such a good one.

Making Something Out Of Nothing

Another thing I like about this campaign, not least for its creativity, but how the person behind it took something that was probably fairly usual for Chester Zoo – and made it into something bigger. ‘Elephant Keeper’ is probably a position Chester Zoo have hired for in the past, I can’t be wrong in presuming they hire all kinds of ‘Keepers’ on a recurring basis. And that’s what makes this nifty little campaign even better. The PR behind it all took something typical for Chester Zoo, and crafted it into a story that they knew would capture both the media and the public’s attention.

The articles themselves go into the details of the role, including job requirements, holiday days and salary. Who needs a recruitment agency when the press does it for you for free, eh?

What I also love about this campaign is that not only does it have the basic PR benefits, but it also has the backlinks too. Coverage is great, but if you’re actively working on improving your SEO, links are like gold dust. And with a campaign like this, a link is pretty much guaranteed as you’re going to want to direct people where to sign up. If a publication didn’t do this, their readers would be annoyed. And thus they’re pretty much tied into linking. Foolproof.

This again reiterates the argument I have that we should learn PR before we learn link building, because people with a PR brain know how to get people to engage, and people with a link building brain know how to get publications to link. It’s a perfect partnership.

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What every link builder LOVES to see

The kind of campaign that gets coverage, gets attention, gets links and gets clicks. You just absolutely love to see it. Great work, Chester Zoo.

What do you think of this campaign? I’m sure there are a few digital PRs in my network who’d love to sing its praises. Tell me all about what you think on Twitter or in the comments below.

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