Make-a-Donation an innovative new fundraising opportunity

Make-a-Donation approached Purple Frog in 2012 with a concept that quite frankly wowed us. At Purple Frog we have always believed that the local community we work in is important and that interacting and being part of the community is fundamental in creating business success. To see a simple concept that gives businesses the opportunity to advertise cost effectively and in a way that enables costs to be controlled in addition to giving something back to charities and local not for profit organisations was music to our ears.

The Challenge

Purple Frog were tasked with developing a brand identity along with a marketing strategy for the overall concept to ensure awareness and engagement was made with the 3 key target audiences. We were also asked to build and develop a database driven website with a CMS system included and a site that can easily be developed and improved with a list of creative solutions going forward.

The Big Idea

Donate and have your donation doubled in voucher credits to be redeemed against money off vouchers from local businesses.

100% of all donations going to the Not For Profit Organisation with no fees, no bank charges, no subscriptions, ever!

Promote your business with tailored sales promotions in the form of money off vouchers to an active local audience.

This creates a triangle where all parties involved are winners; charities raise money and pay no fees; businesses can target their local community cost effectively and measurably and finally donors can benefit from their philanthropy and even those who are just voucher seekers are donating when using the site. In fact the more you give, the more you get.

Helping Local Communities

There are a number of donation based sites on the internet but these only help registered charities. They are also purely driven by donations and events, in fact they are just an electronic sponsorship form. That said they have certainly helped charities in their fundraising efforts by making the whole principle of giving easier.

Make-a-Donation however are extending this principle. Local Not For Profit Organisations such as PTA committees, Sports Clubs, Playgroups, Theatre Groups and Local Amenities can raise funds through the site. These groups together with registered charities will be able to register for free and all they then need to do is create a targeted fundraising project.

Targeted fundraising is also a difference in the Make-a-Donation model. Targeted fundraising works as donors like to know what their money is being spent on. General donations to large charities are fine but knowing that your £5 is helping towards a target of £1,000 and that the outcome is tangible, a new scanner, goalposts, stages or just a day trip for the elderly in your community brings the donation to life. Targeted fundraising also sets a clear focus and gives the fundraising organisation a goal to reach and one to shout about when it is achieved.


The initial phase of the website has been completed and the site is now live at The site currently allows the concept above to be enacted and is now being populated by the client as Not For Profit Organisations and businesses are signed up. The plan for growth is rapid and the website will also develop further over the next few months with the addition of a heroes and challenges section allowing individuals and groups to raise money through challenges they are doing and for them to link this to a fundraising cause on the site.

We are also developing a mobile version of the site, a referral system to enable Not For Profits to raise even more money, a marketing and print portal for the businesses and Not For Profits to use, a mobile app with geo location, mobile vouchers and SMS notifications. Finally we will make the site more local and personalisable as the number of organisations and businesses increase and the geographic spread of the site increases.


The marketing of such a revolutionary idea is of paramount importance and Purple Frog have developed a plan which will grow with the business as it grows. The marketing is to 3 distinct audiences, the Not For Profits, the businesses and the consumer.

At launch and for the initial 3 months we will be concentrating our efforts on spreading the word through social media, Facebook ( and Twitter (

The power of social media for this type of offer is vast as all Not For Profits have Super Doers in their ranks and these will not only be able to spread the word via word of mouth but also through their social networks. They are raising funds, they are now not just soliciting donations but are able to show that Make-a-Donation is offering something in return, so why not shout about it. Businesses will be able to be part of this network with their sales promotions being visible on the Make-a-Donation social media sites as well as those of the Not For Profits and those of their fundraising champions. A viral opportunity exists that Purple Frog will exploit in the coming months.

The client is rolling out the site via post codes with the first 3 being SL, OX and HP. Our other marketing and advertising activity will centre around building local awareness in each area as it is developed with the use of targeted social media, a concentrated PR campaign as well as local radio, adshells and bus advertising and email marketing. The reach of the site and therefore the marketing will grow as the site increases registrations and in each area the target is to sign up 2,000 businesses and 800 Not for Profits. Assuming each only has a database of 50 contacts, this would create a potential audience in each area of 140,000. An audience Purple Frog will help the client reach and engage with.


A great concept giving a great deal to everyone involved, which will be developed & improved and will be driven by cutting edge technology and marketing techniques. Let us have your thoughts and opinions we would really love to hear them.

About the author

Boss of Digital. Swindon fan. And frantic music collector.

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