M&C Saatchi promotes 2001 census

The importance of the 2001 census in planning Britain's future is

being underscored in new national TV advertising breaking this


Scenes showing people raising their hands and the slogan 'Count me in'

are the central features of the pounds 4 million campaign through M&C


The advertising is part of an initiative by the Office of National

Statistics to ensure that as many people as possible fill in the census

forms to enable the Government and businesses to plan for the


An estimated pounds 50 billion worth of public spending each year -

including sums for health services, education and transport - are based

on census information.

Census organisers are particularly anxious to appeal to elderly people

and young men who are the most reluctant to fill in the 20-page


The 40-second commercial spearheading the campaign features scenes from

local life - from an elderly couple flagging down a bus to a young man

strap-hanging on a tube train. Both mirror the campaign's image of a

raised hand.

The film, which is being supported by a poster campaign, was written and

art directed by Pete Gatley and Tim Harris and directed by Mike

Stephenson for Paul Weiland Films. Media planning is through Walker

Media with media buying by MediaVest.

The census assignment marked M&C's entry on to COI Communication's

roster in February last year.

Nick Hurrell, the agency's joint chief executive, said: 'The beauty of

this campaign is the very simple idea that unless everyone completes

this picture of Britain, everyone could lose out.'

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