Surrey County Council – Test & Trace

As the global coronavirus crisis took hold of the entire nation in March 2020, Air Social was appointed by Surrey County Council to help implement and streamline its Test and Trace strategy across the county. Central Government’s initial attempts to develop a digital contact-tracing app had been unsuccessful and with lockdown measures beginning to ease towards the end of June, finding an alternative way of tracing, tracking and notifying people of any localised outbreak became essential.

In the event of such an outbreak, the council needed to be able to distribute urgent updates, within minutes, to those living or working within a set catchment area and signpost them to the correct sources of relevant information and guidance on what to do next. Air Social devised a digital marketing campaign that would help deliver these messages throughout Surrey County Council’s administrative area using social media and Geo-targeting techniques. This method of communication is immeasurably faster than more traditional forms of advertising, such as via print media or a leaflet drop that would take weeks to print and deliver.


The Campaign – #KeepSurreySafe

The #KeepSurreySafe campaign began on July 1st 2020, a few days before the Government relaxed lockdown rules in England allowing hospitality and leisure businesses to re-open and more people to gather in public and in their own homes. Surrey’s circa 800,000 Facebook and Instagram users were the primary target audience for the campaign, which would provide real-time updates on Test and Trace across the county.

Social Media

Air Social delivered daily social media content to remind Surrey residents to adjust their actions to help prevent a local outbreak. We also selected specific target audiences for certain messages – based on postcodes, age and multiple other criteria – through paid adverts. For example, a post relating to children returning to school targeted at parents.

Digital Marketing

Additionally, Air Social used advanced methods of geo-targeting to deliver urgent messaging directly to those who needed to hear it. This included self-isolation instructions for those in a localised lockdown area and tailored messages to pin drop locations within a specific radius of an outbreak epicentre. We also used the Google Display network to target internet users not active on social media, essentially making it possible to reach every Surrey resident.

#KeepSurreySafe has proved so successful that Air Social has adapted and rolled out the campaign to other local authorities in England.