Journal

Tips from our team... keeping remote working creative

More from Faith this week on keeping creative when your team are all working remotely...

"We've learned that remote, or even blended working patterns don't have to mean the loss of co-creation, team collaborations or creative projects. In fact, there's opportunities to do even more to keep your communications creative, relevant and impactful.

Think sprint not marathon; find new platforms; bust the brief…

These are just three of the top tips for keeping teams creative during the pandemic restrictions that we shared at a Charity Comms conference a few months ago. If you're interested in hearing what other charities told us about their biggest challenges join the recording of our presentation here. If you'd like to dive straight into top tips to run great remote creative ideas sessions, join it here.

Inject some new thinking

We've set up a (slightly silly, definitely useful) new idea prompt generated on our website here. If you're stuck and need a quick injection of something fresh, click and scroll to the bottom where you'll find our 'New thing please' prompt generator right there!

Don't rule anything out

In spite of current restrictions, we've been helping clients to run incredibly sucessful, engaging events, running focus groups and continuing with audience testing for our digital and campaign work, making new films for clients and running Covid-safe photo shoots. There really is no need to feel that you have to put any of your charity's plan on hold - now more than ever is the time to increase your presence, engage your supporters and wider audiences and express exactly who you are as an organisation.

We're running Zoom sessions right now to help clients navigate all of these issues and many more - so if you think we can help (even if its just to assess your current site, without firm plans to make radical changes) get in touch."

Tips from our team... briefing in a film

This week Chris shares his top tips for briefing in a film to your agency:

"If you’re planning some filming for the Autumn, here’s a few pointers to help you get the most out of your shoot…

Ask yourself, is it a film?

This might sound daft, but film is great at taking your audiences to interesting and unusual places and to capture emotions and opinions. Not everything makes a great film, so the first big question to ask is - is film the best and most compelling way to get the information across?

Covid-safe

It’s an obvious one but follow the guidance on safe shooting. Our team have all taken the Covid-safe filming test and have the certification. We can guide you through this if needed to make sure we all stay safe on the job.

Planning makes all the difference

A successful film takes planning and organising. Getting the best locations, the most interesting angles and the most interesting interviewees all takes planning and visualising the final film before you even start.

Vox pops are rarely the best approach

We are often asked to capture ‘vox pops’ which in reality are interviews simply because the subject matter can be more complex than a simple vox pop question. We’d suggest planning your film by thinking about the message first and then decide the best way to communicate your message or story. Vox pops are rarely the best way!

Film it once, use it many times

If you are going to invest in capturing some film content, think about how you can use this content across different channels and formats. This might mean making a few different edits or re-purposing your film to work in portrait or square format. We’d recommend getting the maximum value from your filming by running the content across all of your channels.

Would you watch it?

This last point is critical - only make films that you would watch! What we mean is, make sure your films are as interesting, vibrant and visually dramatic as possible. If you enjoy watching them, then so will your audiences

Good luck!"

Charity webinar: mastering digital and social advertising for your charity

NEW DATE!!!

Creative Concern and Root Media have teamed up to offer a free webinar for charities on 3RD NOVEMBER, 11AM - 12.30PM

When it comes to using using digital to increase fundraising, increase awareness and engagement and build a charity’s brand, there’s a huge range of options that you can take advantage of. But many of us stick to the same few approaches, time and again, because we don’t have the time or knowledge to explore other (potentially far more impactful) routes.

We're inviting charities to register for a 90min, interactive live webinar on 3RD NOVEMBER, 11AM - 12.30PM to bring you up to speed on the latest opportunities available to charities across digital platforms, and give you a chance through questions and group discussion to explore the potential for your organisation. We’ll get stuck into: 

 

- social platforms; does it really have to be all about Facebook? Ways to expand your profile effectively across other social platforms

- integrating your off and online efforts, so they work together and help you build momentum

- how you can ensure that your digital activity doesn’t just drive traffic to your website or social channel, but actually leads to meaningful engagement 

- how to maintain high levels of creativity, even when working with strict formats

There are limited places. Please get in touch with Faith on faith@creativeconcern.com to reserve your space. See you there!

Tips from our team... proofreading

This week, our Senior copywriter, Rebecca shares some top tips for tip top proofreading:

"Proofreading is an important part of any job – it picks up those typos and grammar mistakes that can often slip through earlier drafts. It’s always a good idea to get someone else to proofread your work, a pair of fresh eyes can be key. If you’re proofreading your own work, here are three top tips to spot those mistakes:

1. Don’t rely on spell check. Even when words are spelt correctly, they may be being used incorrectly or be a simple typo (‘an’ instead of and’, ‘dairy’ not ‘diary’). For example spell check won’t pick up ‘What is there name?’ as it’s all spelt right, but it should be ‘What is their name?’.

2. Read aloud. You’re more likely to spot mistakes and awkward sentences if you read them out loud. If you stumble over the words, chances are your reader will too.

3. Check it twice (at least). You’ll do well to spot everything in just one proofreading session. There will be checks for consistency, cross referencing (page numbers etc.) and so on that you’ll need to check back over after the first run through.

Good luck!"

Tips from our team... providing amends to your designer

This week, Faith (our Business Director) shares some tips on how to provide amends and feedback on drafts of creative work.

"We know there's always going to be amends on creative drafts and we build in time to cover these of course!  But there's some simple, practical ways to make sure that your designers really understand what you mean, and rounds of amends are kept to a minimum. 

1. Think about three key areas: content, accuracy and design, when you're reviewing creative drafts. Ask:

Are all the written and visual elements that you expected to see in the draft included (as occasionally, images or lines of writing may be accidentally cut when being added to the draft)?

Are you completely happy with how the document reads?

Are you happy with how the images and graphical elements in your draft appear?

Are all contact details (telephone numbers, email addresses, web addresses etc) included in your draft are correct?

Are all figures (statistics, quantities etc) included in the draft correct?

Are all references and photography credits correct?

2. If you're marking up PDFs, try to use the correct markup tools; there are specific commenting tools for text deletions, replacements, insertions etc. Sticky notes should ideally be kept for general queries or design changes, as it can be difficult to locate exactly where in the text the amend is. There is helpful advice on the Adobe website: https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/acrobat/using/commenting-pdfs.html

3. If you're supplying replacement copy for any part of the document, please supply this as a typed version on email or word document and provide the page and paragraph number for each amend (so we’re clear about what we’re amending)

Super practical - but helps to speed the amends process up and get the final result ready for you much quicker!"

Happy amending! Faith 

Meet Felicity - Together Trust

Together Trust is a charity providing special education, residential services, fostering, family support and community services. The charity commissioned our film team to showcase the positive impact their Newbridge service can make to people aged 18 to 30 and their families.

We were delighted to work with the amazing Felicity and her family to find out more about how the Together Trust is supporting people, providing a diverse range of services and making a real difference to their quality of life. The film was used for a fundraising ball and for online promotional use. 

The Anne Frank Trust UK

We’ve been working with the education charity The Anne Frank Trust UK over the last year on some of their key communications materials, including an animation to promote their Ambassador programme.

The charity uses Anne's life and diary to educate and empower young people to challenge all forms of prejudice and discrimination. Some are trained by the charity to become Anne Frank Ambassadors, and go on to spread Anne's message of social justice and equality for all in their schools, local communities and online.

The animation tells the story of Sam – a bespoke illustrated character – who brings to life the Ambassador journey and the key learning it instills: that everyone is equal and your voice can make a difference – no matter who you are or where you’re from.

Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy events

We have been involved in some inspiring events this month – showcasing some of our clients’ fantastic work, and sharing our insights. 

Earlier in March we joined Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy (whose website we were proud to design, develop and launch earlier this year) at the Stoller Hall in Manchester, for their Northern Lights Conference. During the weeks leading up to the conference, we teamed up with AFP to mentor a number of organisations, as they prepared to pitch for seed funding for their organisation. On the day, our Managing Director, Chris Dessent, spoke to the 150-strong audience, sharing insights around the power of storytelling for organisations seeking funding. 

Then on 25th March, we were back down in London with the Institute of Fundraisers, as part of their annual conference on digital fundraising. A great chance to showcase our wide range of charity fundraising campaigns, we were thrilled to be part of this major event in the IoF’s calendar. 

Lakes International Comic Art Festival competition

We are once again very excited to be working with the Lakes International Comic Art Festival team to promote another weekend festival, showcasing the best comic art from creators around the globe, in the Lake District town of Kendal in October.

One of the feature events at the festival this year is a special Hellboy exhibition, curated by artist Duncan Fegredo. To coincide with the exhibition, we are working with the festival to coordinate a student competition – HELL OF A COMIC ART CHALLENGE.

A tribute to Mike Mignola’s Hellboy, a loveable horned half-demon, students are challenged to create their own new character who despite emerging from the hellish heat and fury of the underworld is, like Hellboy, a cool force for good.

The competition is now open for entries so if you know any budding artists or comic art enthusiasts!

Together Trust fostering campaign

We are proud to be working with Together Trust, an amazing charity providing support and care for 3,700 vulnerable young people and adults across the North West.

We are currently working to support the charity to recruit foster carers. Foster carers provide safe, caring homes for children who need them and our campaign is showcasing how brave and brilliant foster carers really are. Being a foster carer is rarely given the recognition it deserves and our campaign is a celebration of how important they are.

The campaign is currently running across programmatic and social media advertising.

Cause4 website and Arts Fundraising website

Cause4 is an award-winning social enterprise that helps charities and organisations to thrive and innovate. The organisation and its partnership programme, Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy (AFP) were looking for a complete re-development of the Cause4 website and AFP website.

We undertook the two projects simultaneously, starting with research and insight and then developing both sites in line with user expectations. For both projects we aimed to streamline the user experience by integrating the sites with external e-learning platforms and improving navigation of large volumes of information.

We used infographics and animation to bring the online experience to life.