John Ditchfield, Director, Barchester Green
‘Winners and Sinners’ is Barchester Green’s annual analysis of UK-based ethical and environmental funds, worth some £11.2bn. We were asked by the business – the UK’s longest-established independent financial adviser specialising in ethical investment – to launch the 2014 review against the backdrop of October’s Good Money Week to drive awareness of smart and sustainable investment funds and opportunities to invest.
Using the run-up to the latest UN climate talks as context, we framed Barchester’s story as a ‘wake-up call’ to Investors to move away from fossil fuels and invest in a clean economy for long-term growth.
By showcasing the ‘winners’ (funds with a transparent approach to investment and avoid exposure to fossil fuels) and drawing attention to funds still investing in companies that contribute to our environmental and social problems (the ‘sinners’), we framed avoiding fossil fuel investment as both an ethical issue and a matter of smart long-term planning.
We supported Barchester by developing the content for the report, launching it to media during Good Money Week, setting up media interviews, and driving engagement and debate on social media.
The campaign generated more than 30 pieces of coverage with an estimated reach of 6.7 million, including a main feature in The Guardian’s personal finance pages. Other highlights include coverage across MSN UK, Citywire, FT Advisor and Investors’ Chronicle. Central to the campaign was a digital Q&A on ethical investment with Guardian Sustainable Business, supported by a host of expert speakers and engaging a large consumer audience – helping to raise the profile of Barchester Green as expert ethical financial advisors.
By managing social media for Barchester Green’s Good Money Week campaign, we increased the follower base by 51%, and driving traffic to the website, helping Barchester Green to be positioned as leaders and experts in the market.
More widely, the campaign set out the importance of shifting investment from fossil fuels to low-carbon investment, building momentum behind the divestment movement and campaigns to increase funding for successful companies building the green economy.