Since rebranding in 2014, the NSPCC has been striving to promote its brand message as one of solutions rather than shock.

With a new animated film, Pantosaurus, it is continuing its hopeful and inspiring approach - aiming to get parents talking to their children about the awkward topic of sexual abuse.

Combining clever creatives with strategic targeting, it marks the charity’s continued efforts to put a positive spin on its branding.

Here’s three things that elevate its latest campaign. And for more on this topic, check out these posts:

Using video in creative ways

The NSPCC worked with Aardman to create its new animation – best known for being the team behind the famous Wallace and Gromit films.

All about a pants-wearing dinosaur named Pantosaurus, the two-minute video teaches children that their bodies belong only to them and to talk to a trusted adult if they are worried. 

The reason the video works is that it is an effective conversation-starter, enabling parents to raise the subject to their children in a sensitive way.

The happy-sounding song and catchy lyrics means that it is also likely to be remembered, providing children with the tools they need to protect themselves.

Reminiscent of Melbourne Metro Trains’ viral video campaign, ‘Dumb Ways to Die’, it aims to trigger positive emotions while talking about a sensitive subject. 

In doing so, it succeeds in empowering its audience instead of scaring them.

Spot-on targeting

Alongside a clever creative, the NSPCC has been smart with the distribution of its campaign. 

Released just in time for the summer holidays, the animation has been showing in cinemas across the country – a place where children and their parents are likely to be exposed to it.

What’s more, social media ads on Facebook and YouTube have been targeting parents online, with the hashtag #talkpants encouraging viewers to share. 

With its attached quiz, the campaign involves an interactive element to engage children, which simultaneously serves as a way for parents to understand how they are responding.

Finally, if parents are struggling to know how to broach the subject, the NSPCC website also has a video guide with tips and advice from others.

By targeting both parents and children with an array of multichannel content, the campaign covers all bases. 

Re-positioning its brand

In 2014, the NSPCC discontinued its long-running Full Stop campaign in a bid to focus on how the charity is working to prevent child abuse, rather than simply raising awareness about the problem.

Implementing a new strapline, ‘Every child is worth fighting for’, it aimed to change the preconception that the charity only dealt with extreme cases of child abuse. 

As well as being relatable, the NSPCC sought to occupy a much more family-friendly space within the sector, working with high-street brands and getting involved in high-profile fundraising opportunities to enhance awareness.

This shows that even the most established and recognisable charities are capable of change.

By helping parents to be pro-active, the NSPCC (and Pantosaurus) is a great example of how to spread a serious message in a positive way.  

The Charity & Non-Profit Sector is just one of the topics covered at Econsultancy’s Festival of Marketing 2016, which takes place in London on October 5-6.

Nikki Gilliland

Published 17 August, 2016 by Nikki Gilliland @ Econsultancy

Nikki is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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Comments (1)


Greg Richardson, Client Services at Flourish

This is a fantastic film, love the song. It's definitely something i'd share with my 5 year old boy, most definitely.

BUT - it sparks some interesting questions about how a more positive, solutions based approach can also be used to deliver on another important aspect of charity marketing - fundraising.

No doubt bang on brief, this piece is perfect for a parent and child audience with the aim of raising awareness and sharing. But I really think the challenge comes when trying to adopt this style of approach when you've only got fundraising goals in sight.

One of the key challenges for fundraisers, less so brand & PR teams, is how to motivate people to donate and for that we MUST also be honest with the problems we're tackling.

The stories fundraisers have to tell can't all be portrayed through a positive, solutions focused, upbeat lens. The lives of those we're helping through our charity work are often anything but that.

Beautiful approach, for the right objectives. But don't expect a positive, solutions based approach to always deliver when it comes to raising cold hard cash.

almost 2 years ago

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