#Cattic — The purrfect place to study

April 17th, 2018

If you checked your social media on Sunday 1 April you may have seen an announcement about a new space in Hallward library where students can study surrounded by cats: the #Cattic.

The #Cattic was this year’s April Fool — a campaign created and shared by the Digital and Media teams. The teams worked together with Estates and Libraries to create a short video presenting something that our staff and students could believe was in development, before sharing the story over University social media.

The Digital Team also commissioned an artist’s impression of what the #Cattic could look like, and the news team published a blog post about the development that explained the plans in more detail.

April Fool’s day fell on Easter Sunday this year, which meant the story had to work even harder to cut through the social media noise of family events. The Digital Team enlisted the help of social media savvy colleagues at the University to support the story and monitored the reaction before revealing that the story was a joke.

The campaign was hugely successful. The story reached over 200,000 people on 1 April and was a huge talking point on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram profiles with over 3,000 comments on our posts. The blog post achieved 3,000 views that day.

We fooled a lot more people than expected, including some students who clearly didn’t realise what date it was and were over-excited at the idea of studying with cats. We also reached over 100,000 people who weren’t fans of our Facebook page thanks to their friends tagging them in the comments.

Our key takeaway from this project — include Bertie the Hallward cat in your communications if you want people to pay attention to your story.

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