Case study: World Society for the Protection of Animals

A direct mail and email campaign that exceeded all its targets. Our reviewer Tim Hopkins shares his thoughts


Organisation: World Society for the Protection of Animals

Campaign: Pegasus Appeal

Agency: The Good Agency

The Campaign

The WSPA has worked for several years to help neglected donkeys and horses in the Middle East. In 2009, it appealed on behalf of the Pegasus project, which rescues injured equines in Israel.

It sent direct mail packs to supporters with a history of responding to WSPA's appeals, backed by emails asking people to look out for the packs and giving updates on the animals featured in the campaign.

The pack contained an invitation to contact the project's leaders, along with sewing instructions for a nosebag that would save animals from the common, painful injuries caused by ill-fitting harnesses.

Why this approach?

Previous WSPA appeals failed to generate sufficient income, according to The Good Agency, so a new idea was developed called 'powerful anger'.

The charity hoped to tap into people's emotional response to animal welfare by telling the stories of particular animals that have suffered injury or cruelty.

Rosie Chinchen, head of marketing at WSPA UK, said: "We wanted people to feel the dusty heat and smell the horse sweat, so urgent language and hard-hitting images were chosen."

What were the results?

The campaign surpassed all its targets. More than 9,000 people responded - a 9.2 per cent response rate - with an average gift of £24.93. More than 20,000 nosebands were sent back by supporters.

The overall income was £238,573; of this, £205,259 was in response to direct mail. The packs cost 55p each to produce.

By Sophie Hudson



Tim Hopkins, Joint managing director, TW CAT

People who support animal charities often have a deep and emotional connection to the cause, and this campaign successfully taps into that. In creative terms, it breaks no new ground - but that is no bad thing.

It has a clear, straightforward proposition and simple but effective involvement pieces. It brings supporters closer to the charity's work and makes the need for support clear from the start.

A communication can be judged only on whether it meets its objectives. This campaign surpassed expectations and must therefore be considered a success.

I hope they manage to use all of the nosebands, though - 20,000 is a lot.

Creativity: 3
Delivery: 4
7 out of 10

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus