London’s Air Ambulance trauma team provides immediate medical treatment to critically injured patients at the scene of their incident within minutes. However, when the helicopter was out of action for maintenance or training, patients were left without support. Another helicopter would save more lives. But it would increase costs by £1.2 million per annum, a huge challenge for a small charity. The Clearing used the livery of the helicopter and the rapid response car fleet to maximize Londoners’ awareness, understanding and support of the charity. £4.5 million of the 5-year £6 million target was raised within months with a campaign featuring the rebranded helicopter, and a second helicopter was purchased two years after the new designs were launched.
Communicating the story
London’s Air Ambulance delivers world-class pre-hospital care to Londoners – helping 2,000 critically injured people inside the M25 every year. Providing a 24/7 service costs £8.7 million per year, mostly funded through charitable donations. The Clearing realised that the helicopter – the brand’s most visible asset – wasn’t telling their story or boosting fundraising. Highly visible in the sky above London and always photographed when attending incidents, it was a missed opportunity covered with sponsor’s logos. The helicopter became a billboard featuring a call to action, number of critical missions and trauma team messaging. The centre of all PR and fundraising activity, it helped communicate the story. During the first year of the rebrand, fundraising income increased by 68.3% year-on-year.
New positioning and identity
The new positioning and visual identity helped communicate London’s Air Ambulance purpose and charitable status, and generate financial support to deliver the second helicopter.