Charity PR photography of child in Edinburgh's sick kids hospital

Donations soar for Children's Hospital Charity, thanks to our PR agency

Edinburgh Children's Hospital Charity Charity PR Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

Donations soar for Children’s Hospital Charity, thanks to our PR agency

Edinburgh Children's Hospital Charity Charity PR


After 25 years as one of Scotland’s best-known charities, the Sick Kids Friends Foundation decided it to change its name, to better reflect the scope of its work.
Renaming as Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity (ECHC) was widely approved by medical staff and families benefitting from its work. It also helped prepare for an move to a purpose-built new site.
However, there were concerns. Evidence from other charities which went through such transformations suggested the process could cause confusion, dampen support or reduce donations. Our challenge was to prevent such negative outcomes.
With just a few months to plan, we worked with the charity to prepare an imaginative and integrated, communication campaign, spanning newspapers, broadcast and social media channels.
It would engage patients, relatives, staff and supporters and deliver results the charity could only dream of – including a major increase in donations.


Objectives for the month-long campaign –focused around the May 1 launch– were to:
Generate 20 items of media coverage, deliver 1 million opportunities to see (OTS)  and ensure 60% of coverage include at least one Key Message
We also set out to increase website visits by 20%, with a 15% increase in visits to the donation page.
Digitally we targeted an increase of 500 Facebook Likes; social media reach of 250,000 with 4000 engagements and 1000 video views.
The campaign also aimed to increase online donations by 10% and online donation value by 20%.
It was crucial to avoid negative perceptions about the name change. To track this we developed a coverage sentiment matrix and set a baseline.
That allowed us to target an increase in the sentiment score of coverage from 19 to 25 (32%) during the campaign and to increase the average positive score per item of coverage from 1.4 to 1.6 (14%)

What we did

We coordinated print, web, and video content to engage and inform the public.
Some of our tactics included a buzz-building social media teaser campaign; an exclusive launch partnership with Edinburgh Evening News; an imaginative follow up photo call for national media.
Those were followed up with a rollout of compelling case studies for regional media – and one of the biggest successes was a month-long social media push on the “Humans of ECHC”, which involved 24 social media case studies, providing a  month’s worth of fresh, engaging and shareable content.
The carefully-crafted campaign involved 28 social media “teaser” posts, while we also produced a detailed social media guide for the charity’s ambassadors, to help them fully promote the messaging as widely as possible.
We also researched and produced five regionalised media case studies, set up two photo opportunities, promoted celebrity backers including Royal Patron HRH Princess Beatrice and celebrity chef Tony Singh and worked with ECHC we produced nine short videos.

Major articles of coverage

Opportunities to see the charity’s story

Articles carrying important Key Messages

Website visits

Results we delivered

Donation page visits

Increase in donation value

Social media reach

Video views

Sentiment score