Bath – lots of Georgian splendour, but very little connectivity. That’s what our client – Northcliffe Newspapers told us. Meaning the new, young, affluent residents of Bath didn’t have a deep rooted relationship with their local community. Which meant they didn’t read the Bath Chronicle. What’s more, the existing readership profile was getting older, and more downmarket.
Northcliffe therefore took the bold step of deciding to change the ‘Chron’ from a daily to a weekly newspaper. The move would also be accompanied by a radical change in design to appeal to the new population. Taking style cues from the more stylish national newspapers, the editorial team revamped the art direction, typography and use of photography.
When we got the call, the new ‘Chron’ was a week from launch. It’s the way newspaper people like to work. Tight deadlines. Lots of pressure. So 24 hours after taking the brief we were back, with a fully artworked campaign designed to appeal to an erudite and sophisticated metropolitan audience.
Our campaign focused on words – not images. This was a time for the new Bath Chronicle to make a definitive statement about who they were, what they stood for and what they believed in. It invited the audience to buy the paper, go online, and join in the debate on all the issues that matter most in Bath.
The campaign ran on 48 sheets, 6 sheets, bus-sides and online. During launch, the Bath Chronicle was virtually on every street in the city. The results have been impressive. Newspaper sales decline has been halted, and indeed, reversed against the key new audience.
“I certainly didn’t envy you, coming in late, being given an unusual brief and then coming over here and hearing a million different message from us (we are a passionate bunch!) but I think you have produced some cracking, classy designs.”
Sam Holiday, Editor
In April 2008 the campaign was also awarded the ‘Best Regional Advertising campaign’ for 2007 at the annual Newspaper Society Awards.