Brain Awareness Week
Device recognition, a responsive site, an award-winning campaign, £20,000 raised towards assistive technology sessions for those who need them.www.rhn.org.uk
In this day and age, almost every single person uses technology in some way, shape or form to make life easier. In fact, a massive 58% of Brits now own a smartphone and 19% have a tablet.
For some people, the existence of technology is the difference between silence and laughter, loneliness and interaction, and even life and death.
RHN came to us with an idea for a campaign, with the aim of raising £20,000 in order to provide more assisted technology sessions for those in need of RHN’s help – people suffering from the effects of a stroke or locked-in syndrome, as well as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, amongst other disabilities. An opportunity that will give them back their lives.
As technology is so important to RHN’s patients, it made sense that it would be the focal point for the entire campaign.
It needed to be innovative, shareable and memorable, as well as being something that was accessible for many and inspired people to donate. Especially true in an age where more people shop online than donate to charity – a humbling fact for you there.
On top of this, the donation target had to be acheived in just under a week.
The idea behind the campaign was not only to raise money, but to put technology under the spotlight, to show how it can be adapted to help people with neurological disabilities and emphasise just how important it is, outside of the weekly online shop, or that favourite app that you are always using.
So, we created a short film that asked patients what technology means to them – like Zita, whose life was changed forever when she suffered a stroke aged just 26.
We added device recognition technology to the video, and made the website responsive. So, whether someone is using a smartphone, iPad, laptop or computer, the film adapted to show a disabled person at the RHN using the same device to dramatically improve their life.
This device customisation also meant that the call-to-action would differ depending on which device was used, which leads to different donation options being offered. So, if you accessed the site via phone, you would be presented with information about text donation. This means people are much more likely to give.
The RHN took the campaign to Facebook and Twitter, encouraging people to explain what technology means to them after seeing the difference it makes to someone at the RHN, using the hashtag #technologymeans. This hashtag was included in a Thunderclap, which was sent on the Wednesday evening of Brain Awareness Week with a social reach of over 48,000 over the two social networks.
There were other ways technology was used in the campaign too. One of the assistive therapists from RHN took to Reddit to participate in an IAmA (this is a great read if you have a few minutes) engaging a whole new technology-focused audience in dialogue about the hospital’s work. Questions ranged from asking about whether therapists preferred to use Windows or Mac software, to more personal questions and thanks from those who’ve had close experiences with neurological conditions. It took just two hours, and generated thousands of visits to the campaign website.
The Landing Page
From the very start, we decided that the campaign should be live on the main RHN charity website, rather than a separate microsite. This way, we could build features in a way that would allow the fundraising team to run future campaigns without our technical support. This meant than any budget spent would be spread across all future campaigns.
We knew, from experience, that the #technologymeans social campaign would mean that mobile traffic would be high and that the conversion rates of long forms would be poor. So, if a user was viewing from a mobile device, we made the main donate call-to-action change to a simple text donate code, using the same device recognition technology we were using for the videos.
Campaign updates allow RHN to keep the page fresh and inform people of secondary events and activity that was going on during the week, as well as thanking donors when the campaign reached certain milestones.
Finally, we added a prominent target thermometer, which fills automatically based on donations. A proven method used to excite users and add a sense of momentum.
All of these features were made available for the fundraising team to use for future campaigns.
Not only did the RHN meet their record fundraising target, but they exceeded it. All donations, as a result of the campaign, were also doubled by a very generous anonymous donor, so RHN received over £20,0000 and were able to provide 1,024 computer sessions to people living with a disability as a direct result.
Thanks to the social media strategy, including the #technologymeans hashtag and Thunderclap, RHN even received a RT from Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, which went out to his 700,000+ followers.
— RHN Charity (@RHNcharity) March 11, 2013
This campaign is proof of just how far technology can help your message reach, so much so, that it won Best Use of Technology in the 2013 Charity Times Awards, and it doesn’t get much better than that.