World Youth Day ad campaign in Sydney aims to involve locals

Sydney, Australia, May 15, 2008 / 11:49 pm (CNA) .- World Youth Day 2008 organizers have launched a campaign to Sydney-area residents to inform them that the July event is open to all.

The advertising campaign uses the slogan “World Youth Day - The time of your eternal life.”  It includes a mix of metropolitan and suburban print, radio, online, outdoor, and television media.

“We know that many Sydneysiders are keen to be involved in the largest celebration Sydney has ever hosted and this campaign aims to tap into this goodwill,” WYD08 Chief Operating Officer, Danny Casey said. 

“Catholics are the largest religious grouping in Sydney but many are not regular churchgoers; we want to make sure all are welcome.”

The campaign also includes leaflet drops at doorstops targeting half a million Sydney homes.  The leaflets invite readers to volunteer, to become a host for pilgrims, or to attend events during World Youth Day.

Advertising agency DRAFTFCB developed the campaign.  Jonathan Samengo, Head of Strategic Services at DRAFTFCB Sydney, said the campaign was not only aimed at the broader Christian audience.

“It’s important for the Church that Catholics feel very proud of both the event and how it’s being positioned,” Samengo said.  “It’s like the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics. At the Sydney Olympics organizers not only had to showcase Australia to the world, they had to ensure the event reflected modern Australia and how we really see ourselves.”

Other taglines for the advertising campaign include “Happiness – one souvenir you’ll definitely take home,” “An excellent source of pure joy,” and “Find total serenity in a crowd of thousands.”

The campaign began on April 20 and will continue through mid-July.

The 23rd World Youth Day will take place from July 15 to July 20.  About 225,000 pilgrims are registered to attend the event, which will include a Papal Mass with Pope Benedict XVI.