New Zealand Police

NZ Police needed diversity to be able to give more mana to every given situation. It is widely recognised that communities generally respond a lot better to people who understand and can empathise with them and their culture.

Client Stanley St
Date May 2020

We helped transform the New Zealand Police brand from one steeped in colonial associations to one that truly reflects the diversity of our country and represents all our people.

Achieving this has been a collaborative process. Prior to each campaign’s creation, we ran stakeholder engagement sessions, co-design workshops, focus groups and user interviews involving New Zealand Police, our target audiences and communities.

The research phase proved particularly important when it came to reaching and resonating with younger Māori and Pasifika audiences. It was important to pre-validate the strength of our hypotheses, so our team attended New Zealand Police recruitment day sessions for students, interviewed people interested in becoming officers as required, met new recruits and ran community consultations with young Māori and Pasifika in different towns around the country.

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An example of our co-creative approach was our launch campaign ‘Hungry Boy’

We needed to change perceptions about the role and reflect and encourage diversity in our police officers, with an emphasis on Māori, Pasifika and women. To do so, we worked closely with stakeholders to develop a new strategy that shifted our recruitment tactics to focus on skills like empathy rather than physical qualities.

The campaign was seeded by Mai FM influencer K’Lee and soon went viral. But more importantly, it resonated with and encouraged diverse, empathetic, caring applicants and changed the way the community looked at the Police. 

We knew we needed our brand to reflect the inclusivity in our campaigns so we embarked on an extensive and collaborative brand identity refresh with stakeholders and communities, introducing indigenous designs symbolising new life, strength and peace.

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We created further momentum in our next campaign, working with consultants to change perceptions around the job and show a friendlier side to overcome cultural barriers and negative associations held by many young Māori and Pasifika.

The World’s Most Entertaining Recruitment Video showcased 70 real, relatable and diverse officers using teamwork, problem solving, empathy, humour and fitness to demonstrate the realities behind making New Zealand a safer place. Influencers and well-known figures appeared throughout the video, contributing to the campaign’s shareability, relatability and ultimate success.

After such high application volumes, our next strategic challenge became to improve the quality and suitability of applicants. Our research and stakeholder engagement also uncovered the key insight that you’re more likely to join the Police if you know a police officer you can talk about the job with.

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We tested our thinking with an intense research phase and the Police ran ‘ask me anything’ sessions online. We also did a deep dive into social media commentary, IPSOS research, met new recruits and a behavioural scientist interviewed recent officers about their barriers.

All of this culminated in a successful campaign that gave our audience a personal connection with an officer, allowing them to ask questions via social media and our interactive Chat Cops platform with personalised answers provided by real police officers from a range of diverse backgrounds.

Through our dedicated research and collaborative approach, we were able to help the New Zealand Police transform their image, organisation and future.

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Interest and Engagement

30% increase in applications

41% of applications were Female

45% of applications were Maori/Pacific Islanders

100% increase in number of people  who believe ‘care’ is trait NZ Police are looking for in  candidate Police Officers

Application targets exceeded by +60%

51M views across social media globally

83% new applications were  Female, Maori, Asian  and Pasifika

65.5% of applications were 18-29 years old

4 485Design New Zealand Police Brand Identity