As many builders and tradesmen had to adhere to lockdown measures and social distancing guidelines, tools were being left inside vans for longer while construction sites were operating at minimum capacity. This resulted in poorly secured construction sites which provided an opportunity for criminals to take advantage. Distinctly were keen to explore how the industry had been impacted by plant and tool theft, recognising this as an opportunity to secure coverage for Herts Tools, whilst raising awareness to those in the industry.
Distinctly submitted a Freedom of Information request to the Metropolitan Police to find out the following factors; the number of reported tool thefts, their total costs and where the items were stolen from. The data reported London’s figures from the last three years.
Alongside the data, we also provided industry workers and journalists with advice on how to recover your tools if they are stolen as well as how to prevent tool theft.
With the construction and manufacturing industry spanning many different trades, we were able to stagger our media communications across a quarter. We targeted the built sector, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, engineers, roofers and even the security industry.
The promotion of the story from July to September earned Herts Tools 30 pieces of coverage with 22 links back to their home and campaign page. This included coverage on Rated People, The Construction Index, Premier Construction News, Electrical Times and Pro Builder Magazine. Since launching the campaign two months ago, the target keyword ‘plant hire London’ has jumped from position 35 to position 16. Additionally, there has been a 20% increase in referral traffic from third party websites from July to September.
Herts Tools’ website domain rating has also increased from 11 in December to 26 this month, improving the overall quality and strength of the website. As well as highlighting criminal activity in the construction industry, the campaign raised Herts Tools profile as an authoritative expert within this sector.