Occasionally, you come across a campaign that you cannot get out of your mind. The work that Jami Mullikin did with Safe Harbor, a domestic violence non-profit in Greenville SC, has had that stickiness for me. While I occasionally talk about the campaign with clients, the details of the actual campaign were sparse. Finally, this weekend, I spoke with Jami about presenting the case study to my social media MBA class, and he agreed. (See the Google Hangout video at the bottom of this post)
In short, here’s what really appealed to me about the 5Dollarsin5Days.org campaign:
- Clear call to action: give $5
- Emotionally connecting: the video genuinely made a connection with the audience
- Well designed landing page–more than a “donate now” button
- Viral growth through social network
- It generated results
Safe Harbor needed to raise $10,000 by the end of the year. Instead of pursuing a single large gift they would seek smaller, grassroots gifts. Here were the three primary objectives:
- Awareness – Create advocates supporting using social media
- Advocacy – Use social media to build grass roots base of supporters
- Fundraising – Build a base of small donors at $5 entry level
With more than 117,000 people in the greater Greenville, SC area on Facebook, this campaign focused on just 1% of the total Facebook population. By looking to Facebook as the primary network in 2008, the demographics shifted to a younger, early adopter as compared to 2012 standards.
This audience would be responsible for fire-starting the message, so the team identified more than two dozen ambassadors that were involved from the early part of the campaign. These ambassadors appeared in the videos, carried the message on social media, and shared the cause via word of mouth.
The visitors to the website followed this geographic density:
- South Carolina – 1,831
- Georgia – 145
- North Carolina – 135
- Tennessee – 74
Email – Maximize 300 email addresses
Sometimes overlooked in social campaigns, email addresses are golden. While Safe Harbor only had 300 addresses at the time, they were able to maximize the email efforts using a well designed HTML email campaign with a clear call to action. As Jami said, “Email is not meant to be read…it’s meant to be clicked.”
Facebook was the start of this campaign. Prior to aggressively pursuing the 5Dollarsin5Days.org campaign. The team first looked at Safe Harbors existing online assets. On December 1, they had 376 group members. Facebook was the vehicle to primarily carry the campaign.
In the course of a day, the team recorded more than two dozen videos of people sharing what five dollars meant to them. Whether it was a cup of coffee or a Big Mac, this footage created the compelling foundation for the message that this ask is so small that you “may lose that much in change.” When the tone of this video changes from the trivial to the serious, however, the audience is compelled to act, immediately.
Here is the compilation video that the team created:
The team wanted to create urgency with this campaign so they limited the fundraising to only 5 days (December 15 – 19).
In that time period the team:
- Launched 5Dollarsin5Days.org
- Published the Videos on YouTube and Vimeo
- Sent HTML emails out to the mailing list
- Had ambassadors engage their Facebook communities
- Engaged the Twitter community
- Setup a message board for people to share what else the donor would have done with the five dollars
- Called on the blogging community to share the videos
- Leveraged Public Relations contacts to cover the story in the media
- 2,551 Visitors / 1:59 average time on site
- 15% conversion rate
- 506 referrals from Facebook
- 37 referrals from Twitter
- 1430 Facebook Fans – in the move from group to a page not all fans or members converted
- $10,100 in 5 days (with Average donation of $14.60)