Skip to content

Why won’t I give to this campaign?


We all receive lots of marketing and fundraising messages I’m sure and it’s a tried and tested approach to look at our doormats and inboxes to learn what we can from other organisations.

But now I need to engage your help because I don’t know why I’m not inspired to give by this campaign from Save the Children.  I will start by saying that I do support Save The Children so I expect this is a ‘warm’ campaign rather than targeting cold prospects.  But it just isn’t inspiring me…


There are lost of things this email does well:

  • The photos appear realistic – if a bit generic
  • It’s signed from Jonny in the team on the ground to bring some realism – although they didn’t carry this across to the ‘from’ box and went instead for the generic Save the Children UK
  • The copy is succinct and clear in terms of what I’m supposed to do as a reader
  • There are multiple ways to donate throughout the email and the linked page works simply and easily
  • The subject line of ‘1,000,000 reasons to open this email’ piqued my interest – could be perceived as spam but links directly to the number of children needing help
  • The ask is at a reasonable level given the current financial climate – although the option for ‘other amount’ only appears after you click on any of the donate options
  • Technically, the email was created simply so everything opened as it should in my inbox

So there are lots of campaign positives to note… but it still isn’t pushing my emotional buttons enough to make me act.  And this is where I’d like our readers’ thoughts.  Why do you think this isn’t working for me?

I can suggest a few theories but would love to know what you think too as emotional engagement is at the heart of every successful charity campaign.  Here are my thoughts so far:

  • Is the issue just too big for individual donors to be able to solve?
  • Have we seen this message too many times already?
  • Is the cause just too big to make it relate to the ask? (a tenner to help a million children just doesn’t seem well-aligned)

Would you give to this campaign?  If not, I’d be really interested to know your thoughts.  And if so, what’s in there that really makes you want to act?

3 Comments leave one →
  1. 30/07/2012 11:38 pm

    It doesn’t mention ‘YOU’ even once. Seems obvious to me…

  2. 03/08/2012 3:50 pm

    It’s a lazy, generic ad. It might be technically sound but it’s emotionally bland – only marginally more engaging than the PPI Reclaim ads that appear in my inbox. Given that this charity has an on-going relationship with you – they’ve addressed you by name – you’d imagine there might be more warmth in the communication. Now you know what it feels like to be treated as a ‘Cash Cow’! (Do Cash Cows still exist in modern business terminology?)

  3. Adrian Salmon permalink
    27/08/2012 11:30 am

    Well, first off, it could just be that you’re average, Kev – no offence! But we all know (don’t we?) that click through and donation rates to fundraising emails are really low – we’re talking 0.x% or even 0.0x%, so when anybody does click through and give from a fundraising email, it’s a minor miracle in itself!

    So I’m not surprised you haven’t responded – most won’t. I don’t think you’re a ‘Cash Cow’, because if you were, you would have given, maybe feeling a little exploited in the process, but unable to say no. No, you and most donors on our email lists are ‘problem children’ in the BCG matrix terminology – we know they should give, in theory, but most of the time email on its own just isn’t inspiring enough. It’s too easily overlooked and deleted.

    But if you’re trying to fix the message, rather than the medium, then I think the problem is that there is no story above to engage you.

    The best email approach I’ve ever had was from the NSPCC, asking me to upgrade my regular gift – a brief email with the subject line ‘Adrian, this is wrong’. It had a video icon in the body that said ’60 secs’ in the middle, so I knew it wouldn’t take more than a minute of my time to click through.

    Then the landing page told me a story, and showed me what I was giving each month, and suggested an increased amount. I clicked yes, it confirmed my bank details, and the job was done.

    That’s the way to do it 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: