Unless you’re a Premiership footballer, likely you’re feeling the economic pinch. Which is why it’s hardly surprising that charity supporters are becoming ever more conscious regards how their contributions are spent.

Indeed, amongst 1,142 respondents to the 2012 Public Trust and Confidence in Charities survey, the biggest factor identified as influencing trust in a charity was the percentage of donations which make it to the end cause. And though the likes of Children in Need and Comic Relief can, by privilege of their Auntie Beeb  backing, promise that every pound given will go to the good causes, it’s simply not possible for the vast majority of charities to match such a pledge.

So even though the previous edition of the same Public Trust survey, conducted in 2010, revealed only 1% of those questioned flagged up over-spending on advertising as making them reluctant to put their faith in a charity, the fear of being accused of profligacy can still engender creative paralysis when it comes to producing a fundraising video.

The evidence might be anecdotal, but most video production companies will be able to relate their own tales of being told to ensure that a charity clip doesn’t look too cinematic or that the production values are too high (often irrespective of actual budget). Certainly it’s a phenomenon we’ve experienced here at Spectrecom.

Obviously there are many different types of video marketing, charged with achieving many different results. But it’s always important to remember that, in the world of web video, caution need not necessarily be the watchword. Bolder can be better.

Here are two charity videos which take more conceptual approaches, and one recent success of ours…

CASE STUDY # 1:Legend’ (New Zealand Transport Agency)

Eschewing the typical shock tactics of the drink-driving ad, ‘Legend’ uses offbeat humour to directly address the concerns of the target audience – that by trying to stop a friend from boozing and cruising, they’ll look stupid in front of their peers.

Made as a TV advert, specifically targeted at young Maori men, the video took on a life of its own online, becoming a worldwide hit, attracting more than 2.3million YouTube views and garnering hundreds of thousands of Facebook shares.

CASE STUDY # 2:Two Lives’ (Anthony Nolan)

A few years old now, but still a touchstone for charity video marketing – on account of its top-notch production values and cinematic sheen, with these qualities enhancing the unashamedly emotional story.

Plucking at the heartstrings as effectively as any big screen weepie, the clip was a big hit with the judges at the IVCA video advertising awards, winning Gold, Silver and Bronze awards in a host of categories.

CASE STUDY # 3: ‘Giving to the National Trust’ (National Trust)

Created as a tool for enticing donors to the Trust’s Quercus programme, this film was produced by Spectrecom earlier this year, and demonstrates how a very contemporary, high-end look and feel can be created on a relatively modest budget.

The film was a hit with the Trust, who called it an ‘invaluable tool for prospect cultivation,’ also noting ‘it has helped us appeal to the younger, working donor pool that may not have considered giving to the National Trust.’

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