Case study: Cats Protection

A charity that rescues and rehomes abandoned cats launched an emergency appeal to raise more cash

Cats Protection launched an emergency appeal earlier this year
Cats Protection launched an emergency appeal earlier this year

Organisation: Cats Protection

Campaign: Emergency Appeal 2011

Agency: DMS

Cats Protection, a UK charity that rescues and rehomes abandoned cats, sent out an emergency appeal earlier this year after it had struggled to look after more and more animals during the difficult economic climate.

The agency DMS produced a simple pack for it, printed in black and white and consisting of just one piece of z paper and a reply envelope.

It explained the charity's desperate situation and asked for a cash donation of £16.

The pack was signed by the chief executive and was sent out to existing donors with an opening line of apology for asking for donations again so soon after an earlier appeal, but stressing the necessity.

The appeal was intended to raise £100,000, and was mailed out on 15 August to 91,754 people. It raised £339,165 in about three months from 14,847 donors who gave an average of just over £19 each. Each pack cost 26.8p, including postage, agency fees and processing; the total campaign cost was £24,651.

Alison Jarvis, account director at DMS, said: "Cats Protection was brave enough to go with a pared-down, hard-hitting direct mail package."

EXPERT VIEW - Christopher Nield, Head of creative, TW CATChristopher Nield

This appeal is short, sharp, simple - and a runaway success, more than tripling its target. The urgency is made clear with "Emergency Appeal" stamped on the envelope in capital letters. The copy explains why donations are needed but the reason for the crisis could have been more explicit in the opening paragraphs.

The agency did well to keep the approach so direct. Appeals like this serve their purpose brilliantly, but it's an approach to use sparingly to maximise its impact.


Creativity: 2

Delivery: 5

7 out of 10

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