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  • I'm Mark Phillips, the founder and CEO of Bluefrog. After a decade working for both ActionAid and YMCA England, I decided in 1997 to create the fundraising agency that I had been searching for. This is my private space where I share ideas, results, research findings and the odd thought on fundraising. I try to avoid looking at my belly button and concentrate on stuff that will make fundraising more effective. It should all be stuff that you can actually use. If you want to know more, click on the About button below.
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« Why don't people care as much as you? | Main | Face to face attrition - a few thoughts »

Thursday, June 23, 2011


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you are soooo right. Lovely for an award but who would want to give money because staff are complaining about working for Oxfam and want to have meaningless jobs instead.

the brief was hopeless ... it sent the poor kids in the wrong direction,

as someone who loves and supports oxfam I was disappointed to see them dishing the ads that work and the people who have supported them previously.

who needs a yellow pencil, I'd rather have a goat that gives economic empowerment and dignity to a family thanks.

Tara Lepp

I love the Give. Grow. Gain. concept and what Amy Weston did with it. I also like the positive spin on it. I think that's what is most unattractive and ineffective in the 'award-winnng' video - it is very negative.

Thanks for the great examples of bad vs. good charity ads.


I think it's a real shame that the first couple of minutes are so negative - the concept of individual workers updating from their locations about the needs of the people they're working with is essentially sound (though I'm not sure how many people would 'like' or 'add' them on Facebook - perhaps better as blog entries).

It just felt bizarre to move on to positive ideas on engagement after a dialogue that seemed to completely undermine and mock the Oxfam's values or the passion a lot of people have about the cause. Let's just hope that this team don't try to carve out a career in non-profits...

Definitely agree that agencies can be terrible at producing non-profit ads/videos - I had a dreadful experience where our agency came up with the *worst* possible message we could use in video, backed up with a 'quirky' concept that would have alienated the majority of our potential donor base, despite comprehensive briefing. A frustrating experience to say the least!


Hello everybody,

I happen to be one of the guys on the team who did this campaign and i would like to say something. This campaign is based on 2 facts:
1- A lot of people don't engage with NGOs because the idea of "ending poverty" seems too big for them and they basically don't trust that the small help they might give to an NGO might actually make a difference.
2- When poverty is over, Oxfam would not be needed anymore, and I'm sure (based on response from Oxfam workers about this campaign) that there is not ONE social worker in the world that doesn't wish that his mission was over.

The idea of the platform was based on the fact that everybody uses social media to connect with friends and family and get by-the-minute updates from them. So why not use that to give them information straight from oxfam worker who can give them a new perspective on thing, a perspective that is no distorted by the media?

As for the PSA, you're right. The format seems negative but the message behind it is based on a true insight. We didnt mock PSAs for the sake of sounding funny nor to win an award. We mocked it because it seemed like a nice way to deliver the real message: We want our work to be done. You want us to disappear. The only way to do so is by helping us. Basically: help us go away forever.

And lastly, Ged Barker and Eddy Lambert who work at Oxfam and are in charge of all the communication they do were part of the jury of the award which kinda gives it a little bit more credibility i think.

Thanks for the article, thanks for the comments and thanks for understanding that as students breaking into the creative industriy, we are asked to break the rules and think of new perspectives on things. They might not work in the real world, but we'll have enough time to face the real world when we have to.

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