Scouts go back to nature

Scouts Canada rolls out a new five-year national campaign to extol the virtues of kids getting down and dirty out in nature.

Kids learn a lot online these days, but there are some things that just can’t be googled. That’s where Scouts Canada comes in.

A new five-year national campaign rolls out this month, helmed by St. John’s-based Target (which won its Scouting AOR badge this spring). The ads illustrate the discoveries kids can make and the adventures they can have by simply getting outside and getting a little dirty.

‘The strategy is really about showing kids and parents how relevant Scouts is in today’s society,’ says Jenny Smith, creative group head, Target. ‘It’s about getting back to the important things in life: nature, the outdoors, healthy living, having tangible adventures, and the positive influences these experiences can have on a boy or girl now and later on in life.’

The first round of creative includes posters, postcards and flyers targeted to schools and community organizations across the country that bring to mind the kinds of wonder-filled exploits kids can have Scouting. Taglines such as ‘Try finding this on a search engine’ complement images of a lone tent set against a wilderness backdrop. Underneath the Scouts Canada logo is the simple statement: ‘It starts with Scouts.’ Target also handled media buying and planning.

‘This initial tactical grassroots campaign is aimed at getting the core Scouts recruitment message directly into the hands of the primary target audience, which is parents of children in grades K to four,’ says Kelly Reddigan, media manager, Target. ‘The campaign will be rolled out across the country at the local level through schools, community centres and churches, as well as eventually through local media and online.’

Though initially targeting parents, Smith says the plan is to meet kids on their playing field with a digital push.