This year’s selection of the best charity marketing campaigns of 2016 all use thoughtful approaches to engaging with their audiences. Cutting through counts against what has been a challenging backdrop for charities in 2016, with uncertainties around Brexit (particularly for environmental and human rights campaigning organisations), and with a new Fundraising Regulator making its presence felt (- two charities having already been fined)- the market continues to be tough for gaining new supporters and funds. This year’s best charity marketing campaigns include:
1. Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces, tackling homophobic attitudes in sport, came of age in 2016 with the ‘Rainbow’ appearing at Premier League fixtures, top-level rugby union games and even on the Wembley Arch.
2. Shelter’s Vertical Rush took challenge events to a new level with 1,300 runners climbing the 932 steps in London’s Tower 42, and raised a whopping £1.2 million!
3. Time to Talk Day 2016 from Comic Relief and Department of Health took place on the first Thursday in February. They asked the nation to spend 5 minutes talking about mental health, encouraging people to break down the barriers surrounding this difficult subject – a positive and much needed initiative, with 1 in 4 of us experiencing mental health issues.
4. Channel Four’s ‘We’re Superhumans’ promoted coverage of the 2016 Paralympics in Rio with the “Yes I can” chant. This was made up of brilliant goosebumps stuff, featuring a determined cast of 140 disabled sports, performers and members of the public.
5. #22PushupsChallenge campaign reached its target of 22 million pushups around the world to raise awareness of the 22 veteran suicides a day. It required people to complete 22 press-ups in 22 days, to film this challenge and upload it on social media, nominating somebody else for the challenge.
6. Mencap’s Changing Places toilet campaign aimed to increase the number of toilets with a bench, hoist and extra space to meet the needs of the 250,000 people in the country with learning and physical disability. Currently their basic needs aren’t being met as there are just 800 specially designed toilets across the UK.
7. Timpson Free Dry Cleaning campaign offered free dry cleaning for the unemployed (and potentially homeless) who had job interviews.
8. Similarly, Action on Addiction encouraged dry cleaners to donate uncollected suits to Action on Addiction to help recovering substance misusers find a job. 34 dry cleaning services in London have signed up to this campaign.
9. The BBC Micro:bit – a pocket-sized codeable computer with built-in compass and Bluetooth technology, was given free to every child in Year 7 across the UK giving children an exciting and engaging introduction to coding, to help realise their potential early on. Impressive stuff.
10. Battersea Dogs and Cats Home launched the ‘Digital Doggy’ called Barley – a fundraising initiative in which a dog on a billboard appeared to follows shoppers as they walked past.
These charity campaigns are straightforward and engage creatively on many levels, and are clear manifestations of the charities’ purposes.
Wishing you all a Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.