Water Safety New Zealand has been on a mission over the past four years to improve the water survival and injury rate of young males through a social marketing campaign which uses the character of the Grim Reaper. Dubbed The Swim Reaper, this character has well and truly become an anti-hero and hard core influencer of water safety. Keep Reading
The Swim Reaper Summer Campaign
Water Safety New Zealand launched The Swim Reaper campaign in December 2016 aimed specifically at young Kiwi males aged between 15-34 who make up about a third of all preventable drowning fatalities and drowning injuries. The Swim Reaper campaign is funded by ACC and developed by FCB New Zealand.
The Swim Reaper, a confrontational character, delivers water safety messages in a direct and consequential manner. Based on dark humour and mockery, this character, and its antics, get the attention of young males who generally aren’t interested in safety messages, nor convinced that they need to know.
The success of the campaign was acknowledged by it winning the Social Good Campaign category in the 2017 New Zealand Social Media Awards. Internationally,
The Swim Reaper was shortlisted in the Laugh category in the 2017 Facebook awards.
After four years in market over New Zealand summers, M15 - 34 fatal drowning statistics are trending down with the 2019 annual drowning statistics indicating M15 - 34 are making up close to their share of population, or 25%.