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Picture story makes a splash for St Mungo’s

They say a picture is worth a thousand words and this proved true again this year when we worked on St Mungo’s annual fundraising event, Woolly Hat Day.

Tasked with generating national coverage to raise awareness of the homelessness charity and encourage participation in the event, we decided an image-led story would be the best – and most cost-effective – way to make an impact.

We then developed a range of creative ideas to capture the attention of the national media and stand out from the constant steam of images picture editors receive all day long.

The idea of getting winter swimmers to pose wearing woolly hats at an outdoor pool won out with our client. The images would be well-suited for a press shot as they would be colourful, entertaining and – most importantly – unusual.

After contacting and gaining the support of the South London Swimming Club, we hosted photographers from the Daily Telegraph and several picture agencies for an early morning shoot at Tooting Bec Lido in London. Their fantastic shots gained coverage in the Metro, Metro Online, the Telegraph and the Independent.

Further coverage was also secured in The Times and Hello! Magazine after Joanna Lumley donated a hat to be auctioned, a quote and photo to the cause, demonstrating the continuing media pulling power of the right celebrity.

Press coverage for Woolly Hat Day 2014 increased by a quarter on the previous year with 137 articles, which helped to encourage 120 schools and businesses to take part and increased the fundraising total by more than £10,000 on previous years. Hats off to the power of a great image!

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