Omaze is in my opinion one of the best new charities due to its unique ways in fundraising. Founded just 5 years ago in 2012, Omaze has teamed up with countless celebrities and brands in order to raise money for tonnes of not-for-profit organisations through setting up online charity auctions, a.k.a raffles, whereby the public enter donations (which depends on how many times your name is put in the raffle) in order to win. Now whether that’s having dinner with the dashing Idris Elba or being flown out to one of your favourite TV show’s set, or even accompanying stars at their movie premiere – at Omaze this is all possible. Omaze keep 20% of the funding and give the remaining 80% to the perspective charity which is necessary if they wish to continue to maintain this high profile in terms of the brands and celebrity the organisation attracts. As of July 2015, Omaze has offered more than 150 raffles benefiting over 100 charities, receiving donations from over 160 countries. This amount of interaction is outstanding, and given that the prizes and that it is predominantly an online charity means they’re targeting the slightly younger demographic and with social media further promoting the raffles through the brands and celebrities involved only propels Omaze further in terms of popularity and awareness.
Mencap, the UK’s leading learning disability charity, launched its national ‘HERE I AM’ campaign at the end of 2016. With an amazing platform both online and offline, which is something that’s very hard to achieve for some charities, working harmoniously means the promotion of their message is incredibly strong. The statement ‘I’m NOT A LEARNING DISABILITY.” speaks very strongly as to how the projection we have of people with learning disabilities is not how we should see them: they’re people, we all are. Their call to action approach, telling people to search the specific phrase “UNDERSTAND ME’ proved to work in terms of raising awareness and getting people where they needed to go in terms of educating them about the cause. As this is not something that is gender specific or solely effects people of a certain age bracket, it is so important that the people they feature in their campaigns reflected ‘everyone’. Gender, age, and race are definitely touched upon in this campaign but were only used to showcase how it can affect anyone and were in no way the focus of the campaign. The focus was the fact that we need to become more educated on learning disabilities, and realise “all that they are and all that they can be” so that this will no longer be “invisible”.
THIS GIRL CAN, which is shot in the form of a film as well as stills (for promotional purposes), is one of the most strong and powerful campaigns I have seen. Every element, the music, the timings of the track to the footage, the people involved, the activates, the message all come together to make such an inspiring and motivational piece that just exudes that feeling of solidarity and ‘girl power’. Many campaigns target women, but none have done it quite as well as this one has. Most try to go down that stereotypical route of natural beauty but use models that don’t promote positive body image, but here they beat the stereotypes and use the natural woman, the normal woman, the women that actual represent the real world which makes it relatable and resonate with their audience to get involved. Now I’m a sucker for anyone who uses a Missy Elliott tune, but the way in which that film was made with the intensity and the cutting the footage to fit to specific parts of the track work to make it fluid, energetic, lively. Women should be celebrated for being active, it should not be an invitation for judgement – we need to encourage more women to get active and stand together to promote positivity and good, healthy energy amongst one another.
The Oxford Consent campaign is the work of a collaboration between Oxford’s Women’s Issues and Feminism Club, Oxford Photography Club, and Emory Oxford College SGA and was inspired by CalU’s own student led Consent Campaign. The campaign is made up of 10 photographs with “slogans and statements regarding sexual assault and a culture of dangerous attitude, beliefs, and conditions related to rape”. The reason why I think this campaign works particularly well is because in at least one of these images, for their target audience, it is 100% relatable. It’s not just the images that resonate with the viewer, but also the language that they’re using. Basic, simple, non-threatening, blatant, and 100% correct – they tap into the way that the demographic they’re looking to reach speak, whether they’re putting a spin on something that’s trending with the reference to incredibly offensive and sexist song, “Blurred Lines” or on the phrase “Work Hard, Play Hard”. It just works on every level and I think that’s why it was such a successful campaign, because they understood their audience and communicated with them in a way that would have the upmost impact and would make them think when in these kinds of situations as to what is right and wrong. Support is required in dealing with such delicate matters but they must be discussed – that is vital.
The reason why I am so drawn to this campaign is because it is instantly so personal. How the images are focused so tightly on the women’s faces, most importantly their eyes, accompanied by the text work to create an incredibly powerful and extremely emotional campaign that is beautifully simplistic yet very effective. Women should not be disrespected, treated unfairly, and without dignity and that is where the Women’s Asylum Charter comes in. The charity, Asylum Charter, worked with several other small charities to establish the Charter of Rights of Women Seeking Asylum, and it outlines the simple steps needed to make it safe for any woman who feels the need to turn to it for help and guidance. Over 350 organisations now back the Charter to endorse their recommendations from small activism groups to much larger and well-established charities such as Oxfam and the British Red Cross. Women’s Asylum Charter stands on the platform that “women still face a degrading experience when being interviewed by officials. Home Office asylum decisions for women are often woeful. As legal aid cuts kick-in, women will be affected disproportionately. There are horrifying stories of systematic abuse of women in immigration detention centres.” It is how they communicate this message in the simplest form that may be seemingly basic, but in actual fact is full of substance and great depth and power.
M&S teamed up with Breast Cancer Now to raise awareness for breast cancer for women. The charity is the UK’s newest and largest cancer charities. Breast Cancer Now believes that by 2050 everyone who is diagnosed with breast cancer will live “but only if we act now.” Their aim is to “bring together all those affected by the disease to improve the way we prevent, detect, treat and stop breast cancer. So we can move from a time when people fear the disease to a generation where everybody lives.” As Breast Cancer Now is the result of the merger of Breakthrough Breast Cancer and Breast Cancer Campaign and M&S have worked with Breakthrough Breast Cancer since 2001, raising an amazing £20 million, M&S continue to support the merging charity that is, Breast Cancer Now. By using women who have actually been affected by breast cancer whether they’re current suffers, people who have experienced it or even beaten it – women who have been touched by breast cancer in some shape of form – really helps for the campaign to be relatable and real to the viewer so it has more of an emotive outcome. Thus, creating a very powerful campaign.
This campaign by the Salvation Army South Africa was genius! With social media being such a dominating force in today’s society it is such a good idea to take what is trending and apply it, in order to raise awareness and spread the word on a mass level. ‘The Dress’ is the perfect example of something that went viral, directly as the results of social media. The infamous dress involves a picture that was taken of what seemed like any other ordinary dress that’s out there, but this one was different – some people saw that it was white and gold and others saw it as black and blue. It became one of the most talked about topics almost overnight and spread like wildfire, which is why the Salvation Army saught to include it in one of their ad campaigns in 2015 to highlight the high rates of domestic violence. Putting the subject of the photograph in the actual dress that was in question makes it that much more relatable and literal to the fact that this is real and is the inverse of the questions they’re asking of, ‘WHY IS IT SO HARD TO SEE BLACK AND BLUE” as it directly links to the fact she’s wearing the white and gold ‘version’ of ‘The Dress’. The response being the image of a woman covering her injuries from the abuse with make-up being, ‘BECAUSE THEY COVER THEM WITH WHITE AND GOLD’ makes for such a thought provoking, hard-hitting campaign that had such a massive impact on its audience. This, in my opinion, is an exemplary example of how using social trends can boost the profile of a campaign, thus making a successful one that raises awareness and funding for the cause it’s focused on.
LUSH is a company that is built on ethics. It is there philosophy ensuring that every single one of their products is 100% fresh, handmade, vegetarian, and most importantly not tested on animals is their unique selling point that makes for loyal customers. This company stands to fight against animal cruelty and have created some fun and adventurous ad campaigns in order to really engage with their audience. By harnessing the power that ‘National Days’ have and how they trend on social media, the ad campaign LUSH created for ‘International Kissing Day’, that they gave the hashtag #CRUELTYFREEKISSES worked incredibly well and really worked on the idea that kisses are an expression of love and affection which is not synonymous with animal cruelty so why should such a positive and loving act be corrupted by putting something on your lips that has been tested on a helpless animal? It sends a powerful message. I love how they can use both simple but bold, hard-hitting campaigns and also very visually dynamic and creative ways to project their message to the audience. I think that is what makes LUSH such a strong example of ‘peaceful protest’, in the sense that they raise interesting and very relevant points and issues through a platform that reaches the masses, but in a way, that makes it affordable and even fun to make this change to support their cause.
The ad campaigns that LUSH release online may well be very compelling, but LUSH don’t stop there. They take advantage of the fact that they are a high-street brand with a high footfall to further push their ethical ethos and passionate stance on animal cruelty in very powerful ways. They use their shop windows to attract the most attention to passers-by which has proved to be very effective. The petition on the shop window proved to be highly effective, as it allowed tonnes of people to get involved, give their support and spread the word whether it’s through taking a picture of the petition and posting it to their social media accounts or simply through word of mouth, thus educating more of the public. They have also done a couple of demonstrations of a human participant undergoing animal testing in their shop windows which is incredibly graphic and painful to watch. This is incredibly excessive but in my opinion very necessary to show people that just because we can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not happening at this very moment just so we can keep purchasing our favourite foundation or shade of lipstick: why should innocent animals have to suffer for us to paint our faces? The #GAYISOK window display paired with their product with the same name that materialised in the form of a bar of gold soap. By using photographs of mugshots accompanied by the question, “WHAT IF YOUR LOVE WAS ILLEGAL?” and the statement “LGBT RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS.” solidifies the campaign and pushes the urgency of protection for the LGBT community, showing that the care and passion they have for ethics doesn’t just stop at animals, and understand that when rights are questioned they will help to make sure equality is achieved.
Peta is yet another well-established organisation that strives to put a stop to animal cruelty and has been doing so for 36 years. Their slogan, “Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.” clearly states that animals have rights just like we do as people and that they should not be exploited just because they cannot verbally communicate with us. It is the ability to be able to speak and speech alone that separates us and animals, as we humans are too animals on this planet. Our ability to protest, express feelings, and most importantly, to say no is a luxury that animals cannot obtain. This organisation has done countless collaborations, not only with brands but also with celebrities interested and devoted to the cause. One thing Peta is known for is to create incredibly hard-hitting and painfully visually images for the viewer to witness and instantly demands and emotional response, whether its anger, concern, or pain – compassion and sympathy is always the result of their campaigns which is makes them such a successful charity. They use real abuse that is very much happening to animals, however much we try to demand it because it’s better for our conscience, and apply it to humans and literally put us in their shoes. Thus, forcing us to accept responsibility to what others do to these beautiful creatures.
“We work tirelessly to ensure that no young adult has to face cancer alone.” This the mantra that Trekstock model their charity after and what Trekstock aspires to achieve. Confession: when I first received this live brief, I had never heard of Trekstock and the work that they do but after researching the charity and looking at their website I have come to understand their goals, what they stand for and their brand identity. Their site shows many ways in which you can get involved and fundraise for Trekstock, through joining the annual trek or hosting a Deliciously Ella supper club as well as offering fundraising packs and making it known to brands that they are open to collaborations. I think that one thing that they lack is social media presence. If they aim to reach the young adult demographic, so people like my age, they have to mould their brand around the things that that age bracket find important and social media is something that almost every young adult uses daily, and like I said, I had never heard of Trekstock before I was given this brief. Understanding your target audience is key to any successful company and is vital in terms of advertising and marketing. With cancer being such a popular disease to raise money and awareness for with much high profiles than Trekstock, it is imperative that they access and harness all of the tools at their disposal because there are so many simple yet interesting ways to spread the word in this day and age.
Although I have shared concern that Trekstock isn’t using social media to their full advantage, they have used high profile celebrities such as One Direction members Harry Styles and Liam Payne and food blogger Ella Woodward. Having these types of people as brand ambassadors will connect with their target audience, working to attract the attention of the viewer. Looking at the events they have to offer for the participation of the public, it all seems very centred around wellness and self-care which is something that is very popular at the present, especially with the demographic they are looking to appeal to. Even though the fact that they have understood that this is a trend within their target audience, there is a danger that it will start to look more like a lifestyle brand than a charity to raise awareness for cancer amongst young adults. Therefore, I think they need a wider variety of events and innovative ways to fundraise as there is no limit as to what young adults love to do – we are the generation that always strives to try new things and loves a challenge. I think that Trekstock has great potential to be a bold and powerful force within the cancer charity sector, they just need to establish their brand identity a bit more so that it is undoubtedly obvious to everyone looking to get involved.