Dive Flag Campaign Update

New Zealand Underwater ‘Diver Down Awareness’ campaigns, which include this summer’s ‘Fly the Flag’ initiative, have been run almost continuously since the intensive 5-week program began in October 2015.

The decision was made to invest more heavily in this core diver safety area in 2017 and 2018. The new programme launched at Christmas and will remain in place, including with fresh material, until the end of June 2018.

Key missions

Skippers: Promote recognition of the dive flag, its meaning and the maritime rules applicable when the dive flag is present, to skippers and the boating community.

Divers and Spearfishermen: Drive routine and consistent use of dive flags by underwater users. Increase awareness of the options available for a range of activities.

Other water users: Increase awareness outside the diving community of the need to fly a dive flag when engaged in open water swimming activities.

Social media

The campaign enjoys continuous and varied implementations on the Association’s key social media platform (Facebook) with an organic audience size of 43,500.

Several ‘Fly the Flag’ images have been consistently deployed as the header of the NZU Facebook page since 26 December 2016. This policy remains in place.

The hero ‘Fly the Flag’ video has been viewed 56,000 times on the platform, with a further 110,000 impressions. The paid promotion was anchored by targeting an audience of males and females interested in underwater sports. Males 25 to 54 responded best to the promotion, representing almost 50% of all views. Commentary and engagement exceeded expectations with numerous questions asked and comments made.

General posts

Image-based posts were created or shared by NZ Underwater on a regular basis. It was good to see companies like Honda and Stabicraft supporting the campaign with material.

Site-based deployment of digital advertising

The Google Display network allows for the programmatic deployment of multiple ad formats across a range of local websites, based on the user’s browser preferences, behaviours, and multiple relevant data points.

For the ‘Fly the Flag’ campaign, a small budget was allocated to high interest sites such as MetService.co.nz and marine news on Stuff.co.nz and NZHerald.co.nz. The audience was highly targeted in terms of ad relevance which drives up the cost of impressions but also ensures the people most likely to be influenced are reached.

More than 1,000,000 ad impressions were delivered in the two weeks over Christmas and New Years’.

An animated version of the ad can be viewed here.

‘Fly the Flag’ video pre-roll advertising

The ‘Fly the Flag’ hero video was deployed on the YouTube pre-roll network to a similarly targeted audience of divers, spearfishermen, open-water swimmers and recreational vessel skippers.

This execution is viewed as the most successful component of the ‘Fly the Flag’ campaign to date, delivering a view rate greater than 70% in the target audience for a total 51,000 viewers.

The hero video can be viewed here.

‘Fly the Flag’ long form native marketing

Long form native marketing is editorial and image-based, and deployed on news sites via programmatic tools with regional targeting.

For Fly the Flag, New Zealand Underwater has enlisted the assistance of respected retailers and dive professionals to craft educational material on the various forms of dive flag signalling devices available for various applications, particularly the high-risk activity of shore and boat-based spearfishing. Such activities involve long surface intervals and are characterised by the low visibility of the participants. This component is still in development and scheduled for deployment later this month.

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Dive Flag 1.jpg
New Zealand Underwater