We’ve picked the top 5 charity campaigns that have stood out to us recently.
Charity sector marketing campaigns need to capture the hearts (and ultimately, pockets) of their audiences in order to raise funds for the causes they support.
It’s a challenge for charity marketing and fundraising teams to stay creative whilst hitting the right tone. But this is exactly what makes the best charity marketing campaigns out there so impressive.
There are countless campaigns that have stood out to us in the studio, so we thought we’d narrow it down and list some of our favourites from recent times.
Crisis – Impossible to Ignore
Homeless charity, Crisis, commissioned a 4.3m-tall sculpture that makes the topic of homelessness ‘impossible to ignore’. The looming statue, called Alex, depicts a homeless person in winter clothing camped outside Kings Cross Station in London. This eye-catching sculpture was created by artists, Sophie de Oliveira Barata and Helen Lansdown in partnership with adam&eveDDB.
Surrounding the sculpture are QR codes that lead visitors to the Crisis website with the opportunity to donate. In our opinion, this campaign was successful thanks to its scale, uniqueness, and the ease of donation. We also love the fact that it’s grounded in reality, as the face of Alex the statue was created using the facial profiles of 17 people who have been supported by Crisis.
Greenpeace – Wasteminster
In 2021, Greenpeace made a compelling campaign calling out Westminster and the Government on the plastic crisis, aptly titled ‘Wasteminster’. The animation portrayed the amount of plastic the UK dumps on other countries every day, an eyewatering average of 1.8m kilos. The campaign explained that, despite the UK government claiming it’s being recycled, waste is sent overseas to countries like Turkey and Malaysia where it’s burned.
The animation and the short and punchy campaign copy is an accessible way of sharing such an important message. Most of us think we’re helping by separating our recycling, but once we realise the government isn’t even recycling it, it stirs emotion to say the least!
In the Summer of 2021, The FA was announced as the official charity partner of the Alzheimer’s Society for two years. The purpose was to work closely together to help football fans with dementia remain part of the game. Of course, other important aims were to showcase crucial dementia research, increase awareness of support services and raise vital funds for the charity.
For their first high-profile fundraising campaign, the England Men’s team played the second half of their international against Switzerland on 26th March 2022 sporting nameless shirts. The idea was to highlight how people with dementia lose precious memories, including the names of their favourite football players. Following the match, the shirts were auctioned to raise funds.
The stunt was to drive home that, for a football fan, it would be unthinkable to forget a player’s name, but for many football fans living with dementia, this is the reality. A minute-long online video was also released to support the message of “Football should be unforgettable” to encourage viewers to donate to the charity’s cause.
Shelter’s Cost of Living Hacks
Homeless charity, Shelter, channelled satire in their 2022 campaign in response to the government’s cost of living crisis ‘hacks’. The posters mocked the money-saving hacks such as ‘Cost-of-living hack #14 – Just work more hours!’ with responses like, ‘OR the government could make housing more affordable.’
The use of satire is clever, because if you don’t laugh, you might cry. This campaign highlights the current climate’s absurdity and highlights that the government’s advice on things like cancelling your Netflix account isn’t going to save much money in comparison to the amount that many people are in need of simply to survive. Ultimately, they suggest that it’s up to the government to make housing and living more affordable.
CALM – Suicidal Doesn’t Always Look Suicidal
CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) created a powerful campaign aptly titled, Suicidal Doesn’t Always Look Suicidal. This poignant campaign shows clips of what appear to be happy and carefree people laughing and smiling. It’s then revealed that these were some of the last videos of people who took their own lives.
The hard-hitting campaign broaches the topic that not everyone who is suicidal fits the ‘depressed, crying and silent’ stigma that is often talked about. The video makes the audience think twice about their own assumptions and prompts people to check in with friends and family to ask if they’re truly ok, or if they’re struggling.