GCHQ – Government Communications Headquarters – approached TMP with a challenge: they required people to work in their cyber security division, responsible for protecting UK assets.
The dilemma? How to engage suitably skilled individuals who are not necessarily attracted by traditional advertising methods? How do you begin to penetrate their world? A digital world that operates outside of one that most of us are familiar with?
Specifically, we agreed to raise awareness and engagement with GCHQ amongst the cyber specialist community.
After some initial research, it was acknowledged that this campaign couldn’t look like a series of adverts. We needed to get closer to the environments in which our target group operate; we needed to challenge their thinking and inspire them to be ‘activated’.
The campaign comprised of just two core elements – a challenge in the form of a code to break that was seeded in blog environments frequented by individuals with potential cyber skills, and a ‘reveal’ of the role of Cyber Security Specialists in GCHQ to those that were successful.
The challenge involved seeding an anonymous code challenge amongst technical communities using blogs and YouTube. Bloggers were encouraged to spread the word via their networks and promote a sense of competition to crack it. To keep interest levels high there were several stages to the code. On cracking the challenge, GCHQ was revealed as the originator of the code and the individual was invited to apply
The results were astounding. The website recieved 95 million hits from 3.2 million unique users. Whilst live the campaign dominated social media with 4 of the top 5 tweeted terms in the UK being connected to the campaign. We also recieved great PR stand out with articles appearing in 450 publications around the world.