Wings of Change
The Angel of Change campaign’s main goal is to engage people by speaking from their point of view and building brand awareness. But Easter Seals also hopes to net donations and public interest through the increased visibility. One version of the newspaper ad that ran in The New York Times demonstrates a subtle yet clearly financial ask mixed with the campaign’s “feel good” messaging: “You can feel good about giving to Easter Seals. See great stories at Easterseals.com.”
On the site’s Angel of Change drill-down page, visitors have the option to donate, as well as read about “Real-Life” Angels and share their own stories, watch an online movie featuring Easter Seals’ donors and volunteers, send free e-cards, and join Easter Seals’ legislative action network.
Also part of the campaign, long-time Easter Seals corporate partner Safeway, a U.S. supermarket chain, deemed April Easter Seals month and held a tear-pad promotion at check-out counters in all of its stores that utilized the campaign’s messaging and imagery. The fundraising effort pulled everyday supermarket consumers, and even staff, into Easter Seals’ mission and the powerful effects of giving.
“It is a pretty neat way of really shifting to the donor or the participant, the staff member, the volunteer, and saying, ‘Hey, you personally are really making a difference,’” Cleghorn says.
The Safeway promotion raised $2.5 million for the charity and exposed more than 1 million people to the Easter Seals message, Sowa says. Safeway also offered a $100,000 challenge grant to be split among the three Easter Seals affiliates that raised the most funds in their local communities for the campaign between December and March. Affiliates were given a set number of Angel of Change wristbands to aid in the fundraising effort.
Embracing the challenge
For the national offices of Easter Seals, the Angel of Change campaign predominantly was about building brand awareness, but the Safeway challenge opened the door for affiliates to design a fundraising campaign that fit the needs of their local communities. Pam Kirk, director of marketing and community relations for Easter Seals Southwestern Indiana, says her organization took the Safeway challenge and ran with it.