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Always be prepared

17 December 2010

Simon Carter, assistant director of marketing and communications at The Scout Association, talks about how working with Bear Grylls got his organisation in Hello magazine  

A few weeks ago I had an email from our Chief Scout Bear Grylls asking us to pull together 20 fit, young Explorer Scouts aged 14 to 18 for a special event happening at a central London location in seven days time. He told us that there would be a very, very special guest and it would be worth our while as it was a high profile media opportunity!

Getting young people out of school during term time can be hard, especially when you can’t tell the schools the reason for the event and why they are needed. Sometimes, however, you just have to go with things, and having worked with Bear for about a year now I know that he always has great contacts and the inside track on loads of things. So we dutifully pulled together the required number of young people, a video crew and a stills photographer. We supplied the names and addresses of all those attending and turned up at a South London location at the appointed time. All the young people were suitably dressed in branded clothing and were ready to answer any questions put to them.

Successful coverage 

Sure enough, it was a high profile event and was attended by the largest press pack I have seen for a fair few years. It turned out to be the launch of  ABF The Soldiers' Charity's Soldier Challenge event – attended by Prince Harry.

Being part of the event gave us a chance to position our people with Prince Harry and this was reflected in most of the images and broadcast material produced on the day. It’s not often the Scout Movement gets featured in Hello magazine but by making sure we were as they say 'prepared' we got some great coverage from the event.Good luck to ABF The Soldiers' Charity. They put on a great event and do a fantastic job. We were proud to have supported them on a cold wet afternoon in November.

Simon Carter

assistant director marketing and communications, The Scout Association