2017 Bronze Anvil Award of Commendation Winner Highlight: Find Your Park

Reminder: The Bronze Anvil Entry Deadline is March 23rd!


National parks had 273+ million visitors in 2013, but 75% of those visitors were over 40 years old and were disproportionately Caucasian. As the role of the national parks is to preserve America’s stories and treasured places for the future, it was crucial for the visitor base to reflect the diversity of America today. 

Grey NY created the Find Your Park movement, a multi-year integrated campaign to introduce national parks to the next generation of diverse park stewards – millennials – and inspire them to support, donate and engage with the National Park Foundation (NPF) and the National Park Service (NPS). 

FINDYOURPARKThe groundwork of the Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque movement was set in 2014 by increasing the visibility of parks and demonstrating how people can get involved through proactively generating original news. 

In 2015, President Obama officially announced Find Your Park, calling upon Americans to celebrate our nation’s greatest treasures. Grey’s 2015 and 2016 strategy focused on communicating the importance of the centennial anniversary and Find Your Park initiative. To achieve this, they planned a strategic media cadence that leveraged ambassadors and programs.

Michele Obama and Laura Bush served as Honorary Co-Chairs, and Grey produced YouTube videos about connection to parks and leveraged them for PR opportunities. These included behind-the-scenes footage during Mrs. Bush’s annual camping trip via People. 

Grey used celebrity ambassadors to connect with each pillar of the target audience via personal connections to parks. These included:

  • People en Español (Roselyn Sanchez – Hispanic)
  • The View (Bella Thorne – Young Adult)
  •  Wired (Bill Nye – General Market)
  • Curve (Mary Lambert – LGBT)
  • VIBE (Terrence J – African American)
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s HITRECORD company called on its community of artists to create collaborative projects and merchandise inspired by national parks.

The campaign kicked off at an event at Madison Square Garden hosted by Bella Thorne, the Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and the NPS Director Jon Jarvis. 
As part of a U.S. Mobile Tour, a giant wayfinder allowed consumers to interact with America’s 415+ parks in less than 30 seconds, demonstrating the breadth of the national park system. The tour stopped in NYC, Los Angeles and Washington D.C., and was hosted by Find Your Park Ambassadors and NPS/NPF executives.

Blending the creative expressions of parks with urban cultures across the country, the parks came alive with events hosted across the country. For example, as a nod to Thomas Edison Historical Park, New Yorkers worked together, with Celebrity Ambassador Bill Nye, on a giant digital circuit board to control the color of the One World Trade Center spire for the first time ever.

Additional events were held in Austin, TX (hosted by Andy Roddick) and Chicago, IL (hosted by Common). Events inspired by consumer suggestions included Mary Lambert hosting a pop-up concert in front of the first LGBTQ national park, Stonewall National Monument, singing about how national parks provided a safe space for the LGBTQ community. Nye hosted a first-of-its-kind View-a-Thon via Mashable’s Facebook page, to raise awareness for NPF.

Grey also capitalized on seasonality, the news cycle and existing park programs to sustain buzz beyond events and partnerships, including Great Outdoors Month in June and romantic park destinations for Valentine’s Day.

The Find Your Park Movement reached millions of Americans, specifically the target millennial and multicultural audience. For example:

  • The 16 billion earned media impressions in national, regional and local outlets successfully reached the target audience and demonstrated the importance of engaging with and protecting our national parks.
  •  #FindYourPark was a trending topic on Facebook and Twitter in the Centennial Month (August 2016) and featured as a Snapchat Discover Story – social successes that the National Park Service did not see as possible pre-campaign due to their older support system.

To qualitatively measure Find Your Park movement results, Grey NY partnered with Hall & Partners (market research firm) to conduct brand-tracking data over the course of the 19-month campaign. Results indicated that perceptions of national parks and feeling of connection to the National Park Foundation were positively swayed due to the Find Your Park movement. This included:

  • Increasing park visitation by over 20 million visitors
  • Influencing the perception of national parks’ diversity and support of minority groups among multicultural adult millennials 18-35 years old, 85% of who were more interested in visiting national parks after seeing the Find Your Park campaign.

For more information, click here: http://bit.ly/2018anvils.