Kick Start launches U.S. premiere of Statue Stories Chicago

Let's Keep Talking - Lincoln544

Project Description

After a successful run in the UK, Sing London brought its exciting public arts project “Statue Stories Chicago” to the city in August 2015. With the support of the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, and the help of local theater companies, museums and the City of Chicago Park District and Department of Cultural Affairs, Sing London gave voice to 30 statues found throughout the city to engage the community in a deeper, more interactive manner. The main challenge for this project is to educate the public and raise awareness of the unique opportunity to learn and be entertained at their fingertips without a marketing or advertising budget. A strong media strategy, and the collective promotional efforts (PR, signage, social media, newsletters, and websites) of the partner organizations would be crucial in the success of “Talking Statutes Chicago”.

Kick Start recommended an early start on the PR efforts to get placements in national travel and tourism magazines. Kick Start also worked on a one-year social media content strategy, including a month-long countdown to the launch date, and statue/partner specific content to carry momentum through the year, and focus attention on project milestones. Kick Start also recommended in-kind media sponsorship with a Chicago radio station that would reach the broad demographics that the project would appeal to.

Results: The media strategy paid off with feature articles confirmed in several national travel and hospitality publications including AAA Travel, Midwest Living, Travel + Leisure and Front Desk. Additional national coverage included CBS This Morning, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, AIA Magazine and Inside Philanthropy.

Launch day coverage was ubiquitous, and included front page/section features with photos in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, the Daily Herald, a “Chicago Tonight” segment on Chicago Public Television station WTTW TV, as well as news crews from most of the local network affiliates. Radio segments included interviews at Chicago Public Radio stations WBEZ FM and WDCB FM, WGN AM, WBEZ FM, WLS AM, and WBBM Radio.

Kick Start also secured a 12 month sponsorship agreement with Chicago Public Radio, who provided in-kind PSAs, web tile ads, social media messaging and member e-blasts in quarterly flights. With a dedicated intern under the supervision of a Kick Start staffer we were able to prepare a full year of social media content and have it prepped for delivery by Launch Day. Over 7,400 people “phoned” the statues in the first week, exceeding the London/Manchester launch week listens by 30%.

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Kick Start developed the media strategy for the Chicago launch and U.S. debut of the exciting public arts project “Statue Stories Chicago”. With the support of the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, and the help of local theater companies, museums and the City of Chicago Park District and Department of Cultural Affairs, British arts producer Sing London gave voice to 30 statues found throughout the city to engage the community in a deeper, more engaging manner.