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Society encourages UK to stand up for retirement rights, reaching 115k audience simultaneously with innovative campaign, the not-for-profit online venture supported by Skipton Building Society has become the first UK financial organisation and mutual to utilise a thriving social media platform that’s taken America by storm.

Using a social tool called Thunderclap, which has been employed by the White House and United Nations along with the Ministry of Defence, Royal British Legion and BBC to spread their messages online, Skipton Building Society urged supporters to stand up and take control of their retirements.

 Skipton’s Thunderclap campaign reached 115,000 social media users simultaneously with an online ‘flashmob’, calling on people across the UK to help raise the awareness of the issue.

On Tuesday 5 May at 1pm lawyers, doctors, stay-at-home parents and government advisors came together to share to share the message ‘Join the revolution, fight for the retirement you deserve’ across their Facebook and twitter profiles, and encouraged others to add their voices to the campaign.

The campaign gained support from recognised players in the retirement world including Dr Ros Altmann CBE, the UK Government’s Business Champion for Older Workers, who has recently been appointed Pensions Minister; The International Longevity Centre UK (ILC); and Henry Tapper, pensions expert and founder of leading financial blog Pension Playpen.

The founders of over 50s blogs Fab After Fifty and Fighting Fifty also joined the cause, with their support sitting alongside that of head teachers, lawyers and CEOs from across the UK. What united them all was a desire to drive awareness of the issues facing retirees and those planning for retirement, and be a strong and positive force for change.

Clare Mahood, Senior Manager at retiresavvy said: “We’re passionate about retiresavvy being innovative and engaging and we felt this approach was a creative way to bring people together and raise awareness around a growing and important social issue – the lack of retirement preparedness. By calling for people to ‘fight for the retirement they deserve’, we want people to imagine what they want their future to look like, then start to think about what they’ll have to do to achieve this.

Clare added: “We plan to carry on the discussion on our forum and would welcome anyone to have their say on there. Over the coming months and years we want to campaign for real change over the key issues that stand out.”

David Cascino, CEO Thunderclap, said: “It’s great to see financial institutions like Skipton have the foresight to embrace social media and leverage emerging platforms like Thunderclap. No other financial organisations in the UK have yet used our platform so Skipton and retiresavvy really are innovators in their field.”

Retiresavvy is designed for people who are planning for and in retirement, offering information, real-life case studies and peer to peer support and discussion via a live forum.

Powered by Skipton Building Society, retiresavvy is a not-for-profit venture with its own ethos and editorial stance that provides a place for people to come together online and share ideas and experiences, to inspire and inform current and future retirees.

The Society realised there was an urgent need for a resource like after research it conducted showed that 39% of people were not confident in their own financial plans for retirement. Two in five said they are underprepared for their retirement.

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