Illegal money lending has serious consequences, yet people across Wales still borrow money from loan sharks. The cost-of-living crisis exacerbates the issue, with loan sharks taking advantage of people in difficult financial situations. Cowshed supported Stop Loan Sharks Wales in its mission to eradicate illegal money lending, using intelligence to prosecute loan sharks and provide support to victims of the crime.
Stopping loan sharks in Wales
Due to the sensitive nature of cases, we were unable to speak to victims of illegal money lending. There was also no research into the extent of illegal money lending specific to Wales.
Instead, we used what was available to us – significant desk research of other nations coupled with existing SLSW knowledge and anecdotal data on victims and illegal money lenders.
Other loan shark campaigns were flooded with cliched images of loan sharks and actual sharks, used aggressive language such as “bite back” and encouraged vulnerable people to confront their loan shark.
Our strategic approach was clear:
- Use current insight to launch a bilingual campaign to test engagement with SLSW in areas of high deprivation and high risk of illegal money lending.
- Conduct Wales specific research into illegal money lending to inform future campaigns.
We developed two creative strands to address two key issues identified in our research to educate our audience and signpost them to support and targeted the messages through hyper-focused digital, out of home and PR in areas where illegal money lending was most prevalent – Neath, Port Talbot and Wrexham.
- 11,380% increase in web traffic (+2176% on KPI)
- 12 enquiries via the website and hotline
- 13 pieces of media coverage = 18,591,748 OTS.
active leads to stop loan sharks in communities