Case Study: The Global Poverty Project

The global anti-poverty campaign Live Below the Line challenges people who sign up for it to live on £1 a day for five days

McQuiston: UK launch of campaign
McQuiston: UK launch of campaign

Organisation: The Global Poverty Project

Campaign: Live Below the Line

Agency: In-house

The global anti-poverty campaign Live Below the Line challenges people who sign up for it to live on £1 a day for five days.

The project began in Australia in 2010 and was launched in the UK in 2011. It raised £100,000 for nine charities in its first year, and the 2013 appeal, launched by the chef Emma McQuiston, has raised £920,000 so far for 35 charities.

The challenge was the idea of the Australian anti-poverty campaigner Richard Fleming, who lived for three weeks in 2009 on the equivalent of US$1.25 a day, the amount the World Bank defined in 2005 as the extreme poverty line.

Stephen Brown, UK campaigns manager for the Global Poverty Project, the international education and advocacy organisation that runs the campaign, says: "Richard Fleming saw the project as a way of taking people further towards understanding the issues of extreme poverty.

It gets people engaged with the issues and they want to continue campaigning or taking action in the future."

Any charity can sign up to the campaign and promote it to its supporters. Participants create an online profile, post video diaries, spread awareness through social media, seek sponsorship for the challenge and donate the proceeds to their chosen charity.

Charities pay a fee to sign up based on their voluntary income. Their average return on investment is £5.03 for every £1 and the highest is £11.40, Brown says.

This year, 6,000 people signed up to the challenge, which ran between 29 April and 3 May. Charity partners range from Save the Children to smaller organisations such as Positive Women, which works to empower women in Africa.

"The campaign is proving crucial for charities," says Brown. "This year, 50 per cent of participants had never taken an action for that charity before - so it is new people coming into the sector."

EXPERT VIEW - Grahame Darnell, managing director, Darnell Consulting

Grahame Darnell, managing director, Darnell ConsultingThis campaign both connects participants to beneficiaries and gets attention because it's a tough challenge. The desire of people to share their experiences is tailor-made for social media and this is pulling in under-35s. The metrics clearly stack up: ROI averaged 5.03 and £920,000 has been raised to date. This works for smaller charities as an acquisition tool. But I wish the smaller charities were promoted harder on the landing page - four of the six that appear above the fold are big brands.

Creativity 3
Delivery 4
Total: 7 out of 10

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