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Make me feel. If you want me to do something make me feel. Make me care.

This new ad from the Sick Kids Foundation in Canada and reported on in the thestar.com is an undeniable assault on emotions. Launched during the Toronto Maple Leafs home opener this Saturday, the Sick Kids Vs Undeniable campaign rattles at your door, and when open it bursts through. Some ads for commercial products do that, but they are for department stores or insurance or furniture. They know that feeling is the difference and the product is second. That’s why business seeks to stir values and emotional connection. Maybe bigger budgets allow that, but this is our natural territory. So many times we see the deepest reservoir of emotional content in our causes portrayed with barely a ripple, and when it is without the energy, bravery or even worse to a formula where its authenticity and honesty are drowned. Not so in this campaign. Get ready.

 

I defy you to tell me you didn’t feel. Everything was there. Edge, beauty, tragedy, courage, heart-break, love, compassion, spirit. This is the ad that fights back as an ad, let alone provokes a fight back against kids being sick. It blends all these together. Sight, sound, music, words, loud and soft and at the end not only do I feel, but it’s what I feel that moves me to want to stand with them.

As I look around at the landscape of campaign material the sector produces, I sometimes wonder if we are even awake, let alone angry, or inspired or passionate enough to cut through with this sort of quality. Sure we have and we do….but its not enough.

What do you think? Share and see and above all feel.

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To make a change in legacies we need the right culture and the right leadership to make it happen. It’s about us personally but also our teams and our organisations working together.

Over the next week, I will be speaking across Australia in 5 cities in 5 days about legacies and legacy leadership to charities, NGO’s, fundraising directors, fundraisers and legacy specialists. I’m really pleased to be the guest of Include a charity – the Australian campaign to promote gifts in wills. Australia, like the UK and many other countries faces a similar challenge. Many people give to charity, but fewer leave a gift in their will but say they would consider it when asked. It’s why campaigns are so important. It’s why campaigns are leadership. It’s the difference.

The UK’s Remember A Charity campaign has made huge strides and has now built up a bank of knowledge and experience over the last 14 years. I was privileged to be the campaigns chair for 4 years and looking back its clear that what we thought was the case, is now showing in evidence. Much has changed. Legacy conversations, normalising, social media, partnerships, behaviour change at the heart and real insight and evidence. But at its heart has been consistency with innovation. Legacies are an emotional decision backed by rationale action. Understanding where the donors is comes first. Partnering to lever impact drives scale. Cut through from edge and campaigns where people get to talk about it

This week, apart from spending time with Include a Charity members and helping them make more of their legacy programmes, I will get a chance to speak to those who currently aren’t members or are interested in finding out more. With them I will be sharing ways to show organisational leadership by leading legacies and legacy cultures in their own charities. I have 7 pillars from my experience that I believe show the way to become a legacy leader. Over the next 7 days I will share an explanation of each pillar in my blog.

If you’d like to become a legacy leader in your organisation or want to share your thoughts drop me an email.

So. 5 days. 5 cities – Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney. You can follow on Twitter and Facebook at ….or through my blog.

Enjoy the ride.

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I have a confession. I watched the last episode of Mr Selfridge and here’s a curious observation.

Apart from the weaving plots, the hemlines, the scandal and the financial crisis that drives the series there is a curious thread of leadership genius. It’s like a manual in people management. Digging deeper, it turns out that the fiction of the TV, was woven through bones of the man. And, as I discovered, Harry Selfridge was the architect of some pretty good leadership mantra’s. So, in front of perfumes and ladies hats are 9 of the best

  1. “People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.”
  2. “The boss drives his men; the leader coaches them.”
  3. “The boss depends upon authority, the leader on goodwill.”
  4. “The boss inspires fear; the leader inspires enthusiasm.”
  5. “The boss says ‘I’; the leader, ‘we’.”
  6. “The boss fixes the blame for the breakdown; the leader fixes the breakdown.”
  7. “The boss knows how it is done; the leader shows how.”
  8. “The boss says ‘Go’; the leader says ‘Let’s go!'”
  9. “The customer is always right.

And so is the donor. Lessons come from odd places if you are open to them

A second salute in two weeks. Barnardo’s ad is brave and hits hard. A clever contrast that highlights stolen childhoods for so many children with the difference that care and support can make. It could have done with a tighter call to action at the end…but good for Barnardo’s for not shying away from a subject that needs this level of directness.

Great stories get lost because they are often poorly told. The story-teller matters as much as the story. Simple, clear, emotional and true. Sometimes, we try too hard – when simple then becomes unexpected. Here is a brilliant one from a series for Marie Curie Cancer Care.

This is tough. Brave, hard-hitting, honest, heartbreaking, direct, emotional. A powerful authentic story. Controversial but required. A rallying call. A solution. This is the sort of ad that floors you. Save the Children...I salute you.

Thank you. Simple stuff maybe, and simply done makes a world of difference. But sometimes, the heartfelt message needs a little edge. Video continues to grow – from TV ads to simple home shot shorts. Some people seem to get it just right….so here are 5 great examples to inspire….

First Charity: Water – an upbeat use of staff to say thank you whilst showing that they are saying thank you.. you really get the sense that you matter

Next Child’s i foundation – a perfect heartfelt story of need and solution, told simply and honestly – a lovely thank you…

Now Invisible Children – another upbeat staff driven thank you but with an impact report as a moving infographic, with a simple thank you…

This Freedom from Torture video was shared at the IOF Convention and was used at a dinner as part of the evening. Clever build up from one to many just simply applauding you….nice

And finally the NSPCC Christmas TV ad – this was sponsored by suppliers and uses children in a school play to say thank you. It was aired on Christmas day as well….

Sometimes commercial brands can build whole campaigns around the concept of saying thank you – as in P&G Thank you mom campaign for the Olympics. I’ve long been an advocate of collective campaigns from the voluntary and charity sector to promote giving in the UK…..a simple thank you campaign would be a pretty good place to start…..

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