You’re Asking For It
This award-winning campaign reduces the risk of harm and vulnerability to under-18s through the reduction of the proxy-purchasing of alcohol.
The campaign’s foundations
The campaign was created by the Scottish Alcohol Industry Partnership in collaboration with Police Scotland, North Lanarkshire Council and the Scottish Government. This coalition of partners worked together to design and deploy a creative campaign to assist retailers eliminate incidences of an adult knowingly purchasing alcohol for a minor to consume. Several test campaigns ran initially in Motherwell, Wishaw and Leith – all were fully evaluated and deemed successful, leading to an enhanced trial across the entire local authority area of North Lanarkshire in 2017. More than £70,000 of investment was provided by the SAIP and North Lanarkshire Council to fund the initiative.
Innovative campaign design and execution
Campaign packs were developed containing promotional resources and marketing support to explain the initiative and to create awareness in-store. These packs were delivered by Trading, Police officers, and Licensing Standards teams, which facilitated retailer buy-in, enabling them to ask questions and discuss any concerns they may have. Innovative advertising materials in busy-footfall locations maximised the campaign’s exposure. Using an eye-catching 3D graphic treatment on floor vinyls and washable street graffiti, the campaign message (and the penalty for offending) was clear to a wide audience. Multiple media channels delivered the message including social media and town-centre activities. The North Lanarkshire rollout also included schools via the ‘Kickstart’ theatre programme and Motherwell Football Club also got involved.
Disrupt, detect and deter
Independent evaluation of the North Lanarkshire pilot reported 38 adults were detected making a proxy purchase during the campaign and two retailers were found selling to minors. During the campaign, year-on-year public-space assault was reduced by 10% and street drinking was reduced by a remarkable 50%. Independent analysis confirmed increased awareness and comprehension of the proxy-purchase message with high spontaneous recall suggesting that the creative route was very effective. Anecdotal evidence from police confirmed that underage drinking had been disrupted, with youths finding it increasingly difficult to persuade anyone locally to purchase alcohol for them.
Sharing learning and online resource to support campaign rollout
In February 2018 SAIP, Police Scotland and North Lanarkshire Council held an event in Motherwell to share the learning gained from delivering this campaign and its impact and to launch the ‘You’re Asking For It’ website (www.youreaskingforit.com) as a tool to support other areas to roll out the campaign. The event was attended by over 100 professionals from Police Scotland, local authorities and the industry. A key message to the conference participants was that the success of the campaign was very much based on partnership-working.As a result, the following areas subsequently rolled-out the campaign, led by Police Scotland: Kirkintilloch, East Dunbartonshire; Burntisland, Fife, Aberdeen, Moray and parts of Glasgow. Again, the campaign was shown to have a positive impact. Glasgow North West recorded a 50% reduction in incidents involving youth and alcohol compared to the same period in 2017.
In 2018, the SAIP obtained a commitment from the Community Alcohol Partnerships to adopt the ‘You’re Asking For It’ initiative as their official proxy-purchase campaign – consolidating the shared ambition of both organisations.
The SAIP is currently in discussion with Police Scotland about the potential to roll-out the ‘You’re Asking For It’ campaign nationwide.
To find out more
Visit the campaign’s online resource at