Videos that inspire

It was the Virgin London Marathon over the weekend, which is always an amazing event. Thousands of people run for charities that are close to their heart and thousands turn out to cheer them on along the route.

The week following the marathon is a  timely opportunity for charities to thank their runners. It is also a prime opportunity to inspire people to sign up to run for them next year.

Here is a fantastic video from Oxfam, personally thanking EVERY runner who ran the marathon for them. It is a brilliant example of how a video can be made on a shoestring budget yet be really powerful and effective.

Another, quite innovative, video from Anthony Nolan (who are the official 2014 Virgin London Marathon Charity partner) encourages runners to sign up to run for them next year by giving runners in a local park a little taste of what to expect on marathon day.

Both of these videos are not slick, expensive ‘corporate’ videos but rather short, simple videos using real people that bring a smile to your face and make you want to take action.

I also recommend you read Ross McCulloch’s blog post: Your Charity’s videos are crap. Here’s how you can change that.

The art of saying ‘Thank You’

I spotted this tweet from social media monitoring business Sprout Social who had baked a cake for one of their staff to say ‘thank you’ and to show their appreciation for the great feedback she had received from a client: 



It got me thinking how simple it really is to say ‘thank you’ and how we probably don’t say it often enough. 

If you know me at all, you know how much I love Storify so of course I have collated some great ‘Thank You’ examples from charities – from photos, to Vines, to video.

When last did you say ‘Thank You’? 


How I will Improve my Online Engagement

I attended a CharityComms conference on Online Engagement yesterday with really interesting speakers, including Bertie Bosredon, Damien Austin-Walker, Jacqui O’Beirne and Maryam Mossavar amongst others.

Topics included ‘A Strategic Approach to Online Engagement’, ‘Content is King’, ‘Engaging Donors with Online Video’, ‘Acquisition and Innovation – Ways to Find and Convert New Supporters Online’ and many more.

Here is a brilliant video that Brad Smith, Assistant Digital Media Manager at the British Red Cross shared during his workshop on Using Metrics to Improve Website Engagement. It’s food for thought…

You can read the Storify of the conference in all its glory here.

Conferences are always quite full-on so it’s important to reflect on the discussions a day or two later and write down a list of things that really stood out and which will help you to be more effective in your role.

Here are five things I took away from the conference that I wish to implement:

1. Make a more concerted effort to really segment our email marketing audiences and create content that is useful and interesting to them

2. Be more customer centric and create content marketing to appeal to our social media audience

3. Look at improving our YouTube channel and add an action call to encourage more subscribers

4. Implement Ben Holts’s five steps to improve a digital campaign

5. Start measuring our social media more effectively and start using Google Analytics more

If you were at the conference, what did you take away from it? Let me know in the comments field.

Harlem Shake Charity Videos

So…it seems the #CharityShakeOff  has uncovered a whole host of charity Harlem Shake videos. The hashtag on Twitter has seen them promote their moves so I thought I would put them all in one place for you all to see. I think it is fantastic that charities make the most of internet sensations by creating their own versions. It shows us that charities are made up of people, with personalities and passion, and people invest in people. So why not take a leaf out of their book and let your charity staff shine!

So then…who has the best moves? Use the comments section to tell me your favourite!

Macmillan (winner of the #CharityShakeOff)



Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research

Canal & River Trust


BBC Children In Need ( on Vine)

WWF (I think the panda made them do it…)

St Oswald’s Hospice