By James Knight.
One of our emergency services often overlooked is London’s Air Ambulance Charity based out of The Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel, with a specialist team that can save lives in a matter of minutes.
I will talk about how they have managed in the Covid lockdown, with the help of a very positive PR campaign, I come across many campaigns and this is a one which really captured the public and professional imagination.
The two distinctive red helicopters can be seen over London and within the M25, and will be at an emergency within 11 minutes.
The service started in 1989 and has been very successful, saving many lives, 42,000 injured people have been rescued. It’s a 365-day operation 24/7 service.
London’s Air Ambulance is a charity that operates in partnership with both Barts Health NHS Trust and the London Ambulance Service. In 2020 1,494 missions took place.
Flying High on Positive PR
During Covid their public relations swung into action using the social media to raise awareness, making the public aware that the service was still flying during Covid, this was successful in reaching new people also. A number of celebrities and politicians also helped with media channels with campaigns from The Mayor of London to Gary Lineker.
BBC Radio London ran a campaign on how the pandemic had caused a “5 million gap in funding, which the servieces says they will make-up over a 5-year period.
Local newspapers have also played their part, with stories featueing former patients being particularly hard-hitting.
I have written about many great campaigns, there is no doubt the London’s Air Ambulance is a great example of using PR to promote its self and to show the London public what a vital emergency service they are.
Professor James Knight is an international businessman, public relations practitioners and academic. He was Fellow of Bournemouth University Public Relations School, guest speaker at Judge Cambridge, Surrey, Bath and Reading, International Mentor for Oxford Brookes on Hospitality. He is a Fellow of CIPR and the Society of Public Relations of America, as well as a fellow of the Institute of Directors.