“We’re always looking for ways to deliver high quality materials,” says Bhavana Varma, President of the United Way serving Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addington. “It’s very important that our campaign materials be high quality so that our volunteers will have the best resources possible to fundraise for
Challenge 1: When you’re trying to raise funds for important social programs and services, high quality materials are only a starting point. “The materials had
to look professional, but at the same time, they couldn’t look too extravagant,” says BmDodo Strategic Design partner Brian Dodo. “The United Way didn’t want it to look like they were spending all of the money they were raising on their marketing materials.”
Solution: Brian and partner Jennifer Cameron worked hard behind the scenes to keep printing, delivery and other production costs to a minimum while ensuring
the highest possible quality.
Challenge 2: “We needed to figure out the best way to represent the message visually,” says Jen. “How could we take this complex idea of what the United Way does in the community and bring it to life?”
The Solution: The first step was to develop a set of guidelines to help the organization establish its identity. “Over the years, they had drifted away from
the United Way corporate identity,” Brian explains. “They had guidelines, but they weren’t following them. There was some inconsistency in their approach.”
“I was particularly impressed with the way they approached it,” says Varma. “They didn’t just come up with a concept; they developed it, learning about the United Way and the community as they went along. Brian and Jen wanted to make sure everything – right down to the materials they chose – was reflective of the United Way and conveyed our message in the right way.”
The message came together in the Campaign 2006 theme, Building a Stronger Community Together, which was designed to highlight the connection between the United Way’s donors and the programs and services they support.
The Result: Because the United Way is dedicated to strengthening the KFL&A community, Brian and Jen gave the campaign materials a distinct KFL&A feel. Instead of using models or stock footage, they shot new footage of real Kingstonians in real Kingston settings.
Everyone featured in the new ads, brochures, posters and campaign literature is either a service user or a volunteer at one of the United Way’s member agencies.
All of those materials were made using 100% post-consumer recycled paper and water-based materials, demonstrating that the United Way’s commitment to
the community extends to the environment as well.
BmDodo also gave the United Way a new on-line identity with a custom-developed content management system. Not only does the system allow the United Way to keep its website in synch with the new campaign materials, it also gives staff the freedom to update the site at will, a feature they particularly appreciate during their busy fall campaign. The site includes a dynamic thermometer graphic with adjustable mercury levels to illustrate the campaign’s progress.
The Outcome: “I really enjoyed how Brian and Jen would challenge us to think beyond our day-to-day operations and think about a concept that would show the community how valuable their donations are,” says Varma.
The new materials helped the United Way set an eighth-straight fundraising record in 2006, as volunteers raised $2,550,000.
Website, with content management system
Lamp post banners