Today (and all tonight) is the 11th annual CreateAthon. CreateAthon was founded by Riggs Advertising in Columbia, South Carolina. It’s a round-the-clock creative blitz hosted by ad agencies across the US and Canada in support of their local non-profits. The marathon session is a great way to leverage the agency skills and structure while also taking advantage of the uncanny ability of advertising folks to stay up all night. So far, Riggs and their many agency partners have helped over 2,000 nonprofits in the US.
I’m Carol Guttery, Taproot Foundation’s Director of Program Operations. I’m staying up all night with Riggs in order to observe the event, learn from them and partner with them to grow the program. I’ll be helping out with today’s work AND eating my way through the kitchen sink of caffeine, sugar and protein that they are supplying me with in the hope that I’ll be able to keep pace. My ad agency days were a long time ago so we’ll see how well I can hang with the pros.
- Introductions and review of the schedule for the day. Riggs has chosen to do:
- Marketing campaigns for Souper Bowl of Caring and Appleseed Legal Justice
- A marketing plan and brochure for Palmetto Place
- A TV spot for the Girl Scouts
- Logos for Lexington Interfaith Community Services and keep Midlands Beautiful
- And an extensive integrated marketing campaign centered around family giving for
- the Central Carolinas Community Foundation (CCCF)
Feeding Hungry Carol : Coffee & a Krispy Kreme
I’ve been working on helping the Palmetto team figure out how to piece together a marketing audit and key messages for the children’s emergency shelter. The organization really needs a solid collateral piece to help them solicit new donors. Peyton Rowe has her own blog going and has begun to document our progress. http://createathon08riggs.blogspot.com/
Feeding Hungry Carol : Yum. Amanda brought in food from the local Greek Festival- lamb meatballs, buttery orzo salad, spanikopita washed down with a water and two Motrin. Deelish.
Worked on Palmetto some more. Then moved onto a marketing strategy and PR campaign for Souper Bowl of Caring . This organization has done a great job of engaging kids in fundraising campaigns around the Super Bowl—but they would like to build more awareness. I’m starting to see people whizzing around the office in scooters. Time to take a break.
Feeding Hungry Carol : Nibbles of cheddar and pepper jack cheese and a Rice Krispie square. More water. More Motrin.
Did some Taproot Foundation work. Then back to the pro bono. Spent more time on Souper Bowl of Caring. I’m suggesting that, since teens are a key audience, they spend some effort bulking up their presence on social networking sites. As the proud 45 year old owner of my own Facebook page, I’m almost cool enough to know what I’m talking about. Hmmm, seeing a delivery guy come in the front door….gotta go.
Feeding Hungry Carol : Salad bar fixins’, hummus and pita. More caffeine. Did I mention the double layer chocolate cake that the CCCF client brought in for us? There’s hardly room for it on the counter next to the gorp, brownies, nuts and leftover Krispy Kremes. But we’ll do our best to make room.
This CCCF campaign is an important effort on their part to engage families in philanthropic giving…it’s a big campaign so we need to get it right. After a few rounds of strategy, then back to the original strategy, then re-thinking the re-thought strategy, we have arrived at a strong direction. Now we are all off to work on the individual pieces. I’m working on developing questions for a family dinner-table game designed to stimulate family conversation. But, you know, make it fun for kids. Better get a snack first.
Feeding Hungry Carol : Motrin, more cheese, BBQ Lays
- More questions
- More Diet Coke
Just did a review of all of the work so far. Everything’s done but CCCF. We are still working on production for many of the marketing elements. All of the work looks GREAT. Most of these projects are over-delivering in some way or another. As it turns out, Appleseed is not only getting a marketing plan but also a new visual identity and signage to replace the broken-down cardboard sign that currently marks their space.
Feeding Hungry Carol : repeat of the 11:30 break. Both my intellectual and gastronomical imagination is beginning to fade.
Feeding Hungry Carol : no food…must sleep
I’m refreshed from a very early morning 1-1/2 hour nap. The presentation for CCCF went very well. The strategy was strong and all of the elements of the campaign– print, outdoor, TV, website, brochure, game– hung together. It was very well received by the Foundation. As Teresa sez, “It’s the magic of CreateAthon”. Thank you to Riggs for hosting me and for all of the great work that they have done for Columbia nonprofits for the last 11 years.
Feeding Hungry Carol : Repeat of yesterday morning: coffee and a little glazed wonder from Krispy Kreme.
See you next year.