voluntary sector

Enhancing Voluntary Sector Marketing and Communications

voluntary sector

08:45 - 16:00

Thursday 13 June 2019

Prospero House- etc Venues, Central London

This Forum will provide attendees with an excellent opportunity to discuss innovative methods for enhancing marketing practices and communication campaigns across the voluntary sector. Communications and marketing experts will share best practice strategies that will deliver enhanced public engagement, improved fundraising and increase volunteer recruitment. Delegates will also learn how best to utilise social media to reach a wider range of stakeholders, develop strong, effective branding and create engaging content.


This Forum is specifically designed for the voluntary sector. Job titles will include:

  • Marketing Managers and Directors
  • Social Marketing Managers
  • Communications Managers and Officers
  • Digital Marketing Managers
  • Heads of Digital
  • Directors of Fundraising
  • Directors of Innovation
  • Research and Insight Managers
  • Fundraising Managers and Officers
  • Heads of Media
  • Directors Communications and PR
  • Heads of Strategy and Engagement

This Forum is also open to the Private Sector to encourage networking and debate.

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Chloe Stables, Head of Communications, NCVO
  • Baroness Pitkeathley, Co-Chair, The All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Charities and Volunteering
  • Zoe Amar, Chair, The Charity Digital Code of Practice
  • Amelia Lawrence, Marketing & Stewardship Lead, Emma Day, Senior Marketing Manager, Lee Sumner, Marketing Manager, British Heart Foundation
  • Mike Webb, Head of Policy and Public Affairs, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home
  • Oscar Mackenzie, Social Media Manager, WaterAid
  • Sophie Castell, Director of Relationships, Royal National Institute of Blind People
  • Rob Dawson Director of Advocacy, Communications and Support, Meningitis Research Foundation
View the agenda and additional speakers

According to a study by the Direct Marketing Association, out of all sectors, charities’ emails are the least likely to be opened. The DMA’s Email Benchmarking Report found that only 6 % of charities’ emails are being read and answered, this is behind the publishing sector (7%) and the finance sector (9.5%). Furthermore, a survey from the Institute of Fundraising, as part of HM Revenue & Customs’ Consultation on Cash and Digital Payments in March 2018, found that 70% of charities have seen a decrease in cash donations over the last three years.

In addition, The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport’s (DCMS) Community Life Survey 2017-18 found that 64% of people had taken part in either formal or informal volunteering in the last year, a decrease since 70% in 2013-14. In response, the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities released their ‘Stronger Charities for a Stronger Society’ Report in March 2017. The Committee was told that finance, legal, marketing and digital were all important areas where support and training were needed in the voluntary sector. Also, in the report The Cranfield Trust stated that the funding environment was much more competitive due to increasing number of communication and social media channels available to consumers. This is seeing small and medium sized charities battling to catch up with the innovative marketing and communications techniques so that they are able to compete with larger, national charities.

An increasingly competitive voluntary sector landscape, combined with a decreasing number of donations and volunteers means that it is now more important than ever for voluntary sector organisations to develop effective marketing techniques regardless of their size. The voluntary sector needs to equip itself with the latest communication and marketing methods and implement modern communication practices based around engaging content and delivered through innovative digital practices across a multitude of channels.

Chloe Stables, Head of Communications, NCVO

Chloe oversees communications for the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, the largest network for charities and volunteering. Chloe started her career in advertising, before taking a small detour into politics working for a well-known MP. This led onto working for a large public affairs consultancy before moving to homelessness charity, St Mungo’s, where she established the public affairs function.  Chloe is a trustee of Group B Strep Support, a small charity that campaigns to stop group B Strep infections, including meningitis, in babies. She is also a member of the advisory panel for the University of Westminster MA in Media, Campaigning and Social Change.

Baroness Pitkeathley, Co-Chair, The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Charities and Volunteering

Jill Pitkeathley was born in the Guernsey, Channel Islands and went to school there. After Bristol University she trained as a social worker and worked in Social Services departments in Manchester and Essex  before becoming a Voluntary Services Co -ordinator in the NHS in Berkshire.

She was founder of the carers movement in the 1980s as CEO of what is now CarersUK and was awarded the OBE in 1993.

She was raised to the peerage in 1997 and sits on the Labour benches where she speaks on health, social care and charities.

She was been Chair of the New Opportunities Fund, Cafcass and the Professional  Standards Authority. Between 2005 and 2010 she chaired the Cabinet Office Advisory Body on the Voluntary Sector and in 2017 chaired the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities.

She is President of NCVO, Vice Chair of Cumberland Lodge , Vice President of CarersUK and patron of Herefordshire Carers.


Registration, Refreshments and Networking


Chair's Welcome Address

Adeela Warley, CEO, CharityComms (CONFIRMED)


Morning Keynote: Outlining the Current Voluntary Sector Marketing Landscape

  • Outlining the current landscape of the voluntary sector across the UK
  • Highlighting the work of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Charities and Volunteering in supporting charities across the UK
  • Examining the current challenges facing the voluntary sector regarding marketing, campaigning and lobbying

Baroness Pitkeathley, Co-Chair, The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Charities and Volunteering (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Delivering High-Quality Voluntary Sector Marketing and Communications

  • Assessing the latest trends in charity communication techniques and promoting the development of effective, innovative marketing methods across the voluntary sector
  • Outlining the resources available to help improve marketing and branding as well as help charities boost fundraising and improve campaigning through the NCVO’s KnowHow resource bank
  • Sharing best practice guidance on how to establish a robust social media strategy, including how to define your goals and measure impact, as outlined in NCVO’s ‘How to Develop a Social Media Strategy’ guide
  • Evaluating the role of effective marketing campaigns in increasing engagement and raising awareness of important issues

Chloe Stables, Head of Communications, NCVO (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Establishing an Award-Winning Marketing and Communications Campaign to Raise Awareness

  • Outlining the Meningitis Research Foundation’s ‘One Life. One Shot’ campaign, which aimed to raise awareness and uptake of a life-saving meningitis vaccine by targeting marketing at teenagers both directly and through their parents
  • Examining how partnerships with online communities such as Mumsnet helped to increase exposure, as well as utilising other organisations such as UCAS to ensure the marketing campaign reached the correct audience
  • Sharing advice on how to physically deliver a message focused campaign through both online social media platforms, which embeds emotive video content at the heart of the campaign
  • Analysing the impact of the campaign, which saw 70,000 additional vaccinations take place between April to August 2017, compared to the year before, and visits to the online eligibility checker reached over 15,900 people

Winner of the Third Sector Communications Campaign of the Year Award 2018

Rob Dawson Director of Advocacy, Communications and Support, Meningitis Research Foundation (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Increasing Fundraising Revenue through an Innovative, Data Driven and Personal Communications and Fundraising Campaign

  • Outlining how the British Heart Foundation embedded their fundraisers at the centre of the story through personalised videos to make fundraising more innovative and shareable with potential donors
  • Examining the internal process of creating a personalised video led campaign, including working collaboratively between marketing and data teams to best utilise their CRM and JustGiving API
  • Highlighting the major lessons learnt throughout the campaign, such as the decreasing impact of social media to drive fundraising and a greater demand made by friends and families for sponsorship
  • Assessing the impact of the fundraising campaign, including improved awareness, increased fundraising and further development of relationships between the charity and supporters

Amelia Lawrence, Marketing & Stewardship Lead, Emma Day, Senior Marketing Manager, Lee Sumner, Marketing Manager, British Heart Foundation (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking


Afternoon Keynote: Delivering Lasting Behavioural Change Through Effective Marketing

  • Outlining the seven key principals of the Charity Digital Code of Practice, and how they can be embedded into the marketing process
  • Understanding the key elements which comprise a successful digital marketing programme, such as strong leaderships and a robust digital strategy
  • Sharing best practice guidance on how charities can champion the digital code  and maximises its impact to improve their marketing practices

Zoe Amar, Chair, The Charity Digital Code of Practice (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Case Study: Lobbying and Influencing Legislation Through Effective Communication Campaigns

  • Examining the journey of campaigning for stronger sentences for animal cruelty through Battersea Dogs and Cats Home’s #NotFunny Campaign
  • Sharing guidance on how best to embed robust research into engaging campaign content to drive change and raising public awareness based on facts
  • Outlining the importance of creating shareable content to garner wider public support and the role this played in achieving over 62,000 people sharing content or writing to their MP/MSP
  • Highlighting how the campaign achieved large scale public support, as well as celebrity and political endorsements, resulting in a Draft Animal Welfare Bill and an official change in sentences for animal cruelty

Finalist for the Third Sectors Communications Campaign of the Year Award 2018

Mike Webb, Head of Policy and Public Affairs, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Effectively Utilising Social Media to Deliver an Award-Winning Communications and Fundraising Campaign

  • Examining how WaterAid utilised social media, including YouTube and Twitter to raise awareness of Sierra Leone’s journey to clean water, as part of the #Untapped appeal which achieved over 430 million views combined
  • Utilising interactive technology including Facebook Messenger chatbot to connect people from Tombohuaun with the UK public, to embed an aspect of real-life storytelling into the campaign
  • Outlining how WaterAid worked in partnership with the private sector to utilise new technologies which enabled the campaign to provide an experience as well as telling a story
  • Highlighting the success of the campaign and the key lessons learnt from a campaign that raised £4.2 million and won numerous marketing and fundraising awards

Winner of Campaigns for Good’s Best Global Fundraising and Advocacy Campaign Award 2018 & The Third Sectors Fundraising Campaign of the Year Award 2018

Oscar Mackenzie, Social Media Manager, WaterAid (CONFIRMED)


Case study: Rebranding to Improve Awareness and Engagement

  • Outlining how RNIB developed and launched its new brand as a dynamic articulation of its new strategy.
  • Demonstrating how the new visual identity was developed with accessibility for blind and partially sighted people at the core.
  • Highlighting the major lessons learnt in terms of co-production, integrated communications, channel selection, staff, supporter and volunteer engagement.
  • Assessing the impact of the launch including organisational reputation, fundraising and relationships between the charity and supporters.

Finalist for the Third Sector Fundraising Campaign of the Year Award 2018

Sophie Castell, Director of Relationships, Royal National Institute of Blind People (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Chair's Summary and Close

*programme subject to change

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