Selling It-Give a Little, Campbell Mithun Says in its United Way Campaign-September 2011

Selling It-Give a Little, Campbell Mithun Says in its United Way Campaign-September 2011

NFL fans will soon see the league’s gentle giants extolling the virtues of United Way giving. Yet despite national exposure, it takes local connections for the Greater Twin Cities United Way to raise revenue, which topped $86 million last year. Campbell Mithun, creating a pro bono campaign for the seventh straight year, sees new challenges as the recession has meant fewer workers, lower wages, and a more transitional work force.
 
The Strategy
Accordingly, this year’s “Every One Counts” campaign focuses on the big changes even small contributions can make. “It’s about reminding and inspiring people to help in this economy,” says Reid Holmes, executive creative director at Campbell Mithun. “It’s hard to say ‘Give us some of your paycheck,’ but it’s easier to say, ‘Give up a little something that you might never even notice.’ And yet that small thing for you is huge for someone else.”
 
The Creative Brief
Engaged donors are aging, and “we need to try some new techniques to tell our story to 20- and 30-somethings,” says Kathy Hollenhorst, head of marketing for the local United Way. So the campaign’s creative work extends to guerilla marketing; a big online and social media presence, anchored by a site at connectwithpoverty.org; and even that most ubiquitous of small things carried around the office in the morning, the coffee cup, with multiple cup-sleeve designs available.
 
The Buy
Air time donated by Twin Cities television stations for the United Way’s public service announcements is worth about $100,000. There’s also a paid media campaign, in which the United Way invests about $200,000. Sixty percent of it will run online, with some of that figure allocated to mobile. Ten percent is being spent on 15-second radio spots, and 30 percent is for out-of-home advertising that puts visuals on bus shelters and elsewhere.