Here are five nonprofits who are using funny marketing to make their work more engaging and fun. One of them might even inspire your next campaign.
1. British Heart Foundation – Dechox
The British Heart Foundation has been educating the public and advocating for heart health for over 50 years. They are the United Kingdom’s largest independent funder of cardiovascular disease research. They’re also no stranger to using comedy to get the public’s attention.
Their recent nationwide campaign, Dechox, asked supporters to give up chocolate (or the sweet of their choice) for the month of March and fundraise for research on heart disease. The British Heart Foundation made this fun video to promote the campaign.
2. Keep a Breast – DIY
Keep a Breast is a global, youth-focused organization seeking to eradicate breast cancer for future generations. They educate people about early detection and prevention techniques with travelling education booths and action programs. Started as an arts organization, they use platforms such as music festivals and gallery shows to raise awareness.
They are perhaps best known for their “I <3 Boobies” wristbands. With their roots in the do-it-yourself arts culture, they wanted to bring the same inclusive, creative feeling to their peer-to-peer fundraising program. They made this epic video to show how anyone can be a threat to cancer, complete with the classic movie trailer voice and a small explosion.
3. One.org – Stash the Cash
One.org is dedicated to ending extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. To solve these broad problems, they raise public awareness and work with global leaders to enact policies and fund effective programs.
They recently lobbied to close loopholes that allow drug lords and other criminals to launder money legally. To emphasize that these billion-dollar “phantom firms” are simply scams on a huge scale, they introduced their “Stash the Cash” initiative. The dodgy spokesman and infomercial-esque videos were used to garner public support and influence legislators.
4. American Heart Association – Sneaky Salt
Founded in 1924, the American Heart Association is the United States’ oldest organization fighting cardiovascular disease. They educate the public about treatment and prevention and are a leading provider of CPR training. They promote healthy lifestyle choices for the public and spread awareness about heart disease, which is the nation’s leading cause of death.
The threat is real, but the American Heart Association is using humor to educate people and help them make smart choices. Because excess sodium leads to high blood pressure, it’s important to limit salt in our diet. They made this playful video to show their audience that salt shows up in places they might not expect.
5. Movember – Swim Team
Every November, the Movember Foundation asks men to grow a mustache and fundraise for men’s health issues, such as testicular and prostate cancer. In addition to funding programs in 21 countries, Movember seeks to raise awareness and start conversations about men’s health. The mustache is often the conversation-starter.
Unfortunately, mustaches aren’t always in style, and they can have some creepy connotations. To address these concerns and encourage their audience to get involved, Movember used this video to show the power of a team of Mo Bros.
Your nonprofit is tackling serious issues, but some funny marketing can go a long way toward educating and engaging the public. Share your favorite funny charity campaigns in the comments!