The Trust operates a 24 hour, seven day a week, 365 day a year rescue service to the Taranaki region, but as a not-for-profit organisation funding is hard to come by. HGB’s donor campaign experience has helped the Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust to raise thousands of dollars, enabling them to continue to provide this vital service to the community.
Each year, the Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust must embark on community fundraising activities to raise money to fund its rescue service. These activities include corporate sponsorship initiatives, community engagement opportunities, and a direct mail campaign. The direct mail campaign sees letters delivered to 25,000 households in New Plymouth and the wider Taranaki region. This campaign is a significant income generator for the Trust. HGB was tasked with creating the marketing material.
The Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust has a well-established regular donor campaign. Known as ‘FRIENDS’ of the Rescue Helicopter, individuals who sign up as FRIENDS make an annual donation to the Trust. This provides a secure income stream for the organisation, as opposed to one-off financial gifts. The annual FRIENDS campaign had been very active in the past but the Trust felt it had maximised its income from this. Therefore, the focus was on maintaining the level of income needed from this campaign.
“The Taranaki region is unique in that the community takes real pride in supporting its rescue helicopter. However, it is also a small community so funding potential is capped. We wanted to breathe new life into the FRIENDS campaign and encourage the Taranaki community to rethink – and recognise – the importance of the rescue helicopter service, thus digging a little deeper into their pockets,” says Kylie Harcourt, HGB creative director and donor campaign specialist.
HGB takes a very collaborative approach when working with clients, and the campaign for the Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust was no exception. We positioned ourselves as the Trust’s marketing partner and working with the rescue helicopter team, came up with the campaign ‘Spare a minute, save a life.’
“This campaign was designed to illustrate to Taranaki’s FRIENDS the cost of having a 24 hour, 7 day a week, 365 day a year rescue helicopter service,” explains Kylie. “Drawing on statistics relating to the funding of the helicopter, we created bright, colourful and engaging infographics to clearly demonstrate the cost of the service. We broke these statistics down into how much it costs to have the helicopter in the air on a minute-by-minute basis.”
“We wanted potential supporters to find relevance between their daily lives and the rescue helicopter’s service,” adds Kylie. “All they needed to find was a minute in their day to make a donation. That minute could save a life.”
The ‘Spare a minute, save a life’ campaign was launched in April 2017. Media sponsorship had been gifted to the campaign, so as part of this radio adverts and full page newspaper advertisements ran in the Taranaki Daily News. Personalised letters were delivered directly into the letterboxes of Taranaki residents.
A contributing factor to the success of the campaign was the relationship HGB has with the Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust. A relationship established over a number of years.
Bryce Barnett, Chairperson of the Trust say: “HGB offer a quality service that gets results and this is vital for a charitable organisation like ourselves where every dollar counts. Our fundraising and marketing activity has a direct impact on peoples’ lives and HGB’s input has ensured we can continue to offer this essential rescue service to the people of Taranaki.”
HGB’s donor campaign experience, combined with creative expertise, has taken the Taranaki Rescue Helicopter Trust’s donor activity to greater heights.