Purpose and joy: Keys to the Red Nose Day campaign's success

Comic Relief, the campaign's creator, uses accessibility and strategic partnerships to spread the word about ending child poverty.

CHICAGO: Red Nose Day has raised over $190 million to end child poverty and helped over 16 million children in need since 2015. One key to its success: It is purposeful and joyful, qualities consumers – particularly younger ones – are looking for in the current political climate, said Alison Moore, CEO of Comic Relief USA at PRDecoded.

Red Nose Day is a campaign from Comic Relief, a charity that uses the power of entertainment to drive positive change with an aim to help those who need it most. People want to do good but need easy and accessible ways to help, Moore said at the PRWeek Conference in Chicago on Wednesday.

"These days, with all the tragedy in the world, it’s all very overwhelming," she said. "There is an increasing level of confusion and despair about: How do I get involved?"

People who want to help Red Nose Day’s cause can simply start by buying a red nose at Walgreens, with all profits from sales benefiting the charity.

"One simple act let people know they can contribute; they just buy the nose at Walgreens," said Moore. "That level of accessibility is a very easy onramp to giving and breaks down the barriers of confusion."

People know that when they give money to Red Nose Day, it is being funneled into trusted areas that have an actual impact on others.

"From a consumer side, that’s the original spark," Moore said.

The campaign has also attracted partners aside from Walgreens, including Comcast NBCUniversal, Mars Wrigley Confectionery and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

"There is this commonality that everyone from stem to stern, from celebrity to someone working on the shelves at Walgreens to myself to my daughter are all participating [in this campaign] and making a difference," said Moore. "That galvanizing energy is what does it. Partners we work with feel that with their consumers and employees."

Moore explained that Comic Relief is deliberate about what partners it aligns with for Red Nose Day.

"Our partners have the same goals in mind – the same purposeful activations they are looking for," she said.

Last year, the Red Nose Day campaign launched on digital. Comic Relief worked with Alexa so that when the device came on it said, "I’m usually blue, but today I am red for Red Nose Day. What would you like to donate?" Gamers and streamers also came together on Twitch and Stephen Colbert helped raise "a ton of cash" for the charity on Tiltify, said Moore.

"We want to make donation easy and seamless," she said. "It is leveraging technology for content, entertainment and engagement, but it is also leveraging digital for utility and making it easy."

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