The Challenge

The National Physical Laboratory is the UK’s National Measurement Institute, providing government and industry with world-leading measuring capabilities that underpin prosperity and quality of life; pioneering everything from new antibiotics and cancer treatments to quantum communications and superfast 5G. AprilSix Proof has provided strategic communication and PR services to NPL since 2005, and our work predominantly centres around ensuring the impact of its multidisciplinary research effectively influences key business, political and academic stakeholders. However, with Christmas just around the corner we sensed the opportunity to further raise the profile of NPL’s amazing work amongst the general public.

The Solution

NPL developed the world’s smallest Christmas card – a silicon nitrate membrane 200nm thick, with a coating on each side of 40nm of platinum. For reference, that’s 200 million times smaller than a postage stamp, and over 10 times smaller than the previous record-holder. Ahead of the card’s announcement, AprilSix Proof spoke to national media outlets and offered tailored packages with videos, photographs and expert spokespeople. This meant that as soon as the news broke, NPL’s Christmas miracle began to hit headlines both in the UK and around the world; with broadcast highlights including stars of the comedy programme “The League of Gentleman” discussing the card on BBC’s One Show.
To further maximise engagement, we devised a bespoke social media strategy for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram throughout the week of the announcement. This included video content of the card’s production, infographics and quizzes all designed to boost NPL’s brand awareness.

The Results

• 23 pieces of national coverage, including MailOnline, BBC News, The Daily Telegraph and
• 92 pieces of international coverage
• 83 broadcast appearances, including BBC Radio 4, Heart FM, Capital FM and a section on BBC’s One Show
• 17 pieces of trade coverage
• 60,000 views of the world’s smallest Christmas card video on NPL’s social channels