Diabetes UK's Challenge
Diabetes UK's Challenge website is a social media-connected personal fundraising site. In its first year Challenge was promised £421,709 from a new supporter base: 98% of people had never given to the charity before.
The Challenge site Chameleon created has been a huge success story for Diabetes UK. We’ve already made an impressive return on our investment, and the site continues to go from strength to strength in achieving our objective of engaging new supporters. I think this is a great example of a creative online solution that is exciting and innovative, while delivering real solid results.Graeme ManuelDigital Media Manager, Diabetes UK
Background & ObjectivesDiabetes UK is the leading charity for people in the UK with diabetes. 2009 was its 75th anniversary year, and the charity wanted to create something new online that would extend its reach, capture the imagination of fundraisers and donors from outside its traditional supporter base, and increase the number of new fundraisers. Diabetes UK wanted to ensure that it would break even on any capital development costs within the first year.
Chameleon believed that if Diabetes UK could tap into the phenomenal growth of social media networking, the potential to increase awareness - and therefore fundraising activity - was vast. Working directly with Diabetes UK, Chameleon created the Diabetes Challenge concept, designed and developed www.diabeteschallenge.org.uk, and continues to host the site.
As a key objective is to reach as many new potential fundraisers as possible, the central idea of the campaign was to motivate users to create a challenge of their own and spread the word to their friends, families and colleagues. The website enables any person to set a challenge either for themselves or another. And a challenge can be absolutely anything from climbing a mountain to sitting in a bath of baked beans.
- Supporters can create their profile, set and accept challenges, receive donations and monitor their fundraising progress
- They can post content such as images, video and comments relevant to their challenge ...
- ... which they can then share with their social networks using the site’s connections to Twitter, MySpace and Flickr
- Posting updates to their Facebook profile is made simple by the integration of Facebook Connect API
- Diabetes Challenge provides the charity with its own branded fundraising platform
- It allows for data capture as it is linked with the charity’s CIS contacts database
- Gift aid processes are kept within the control of the charity
- Donation money can be coded by region
- Challenge saves on Diabetes UK’s fees from other third party fundraising sites (around £7000 in first year)
The use of social media, with its ability to reach Diabetes Challenge users’ existing networks, took this campaign way beyond Diabetes UK’s traditional supporter base. Enabling users to integrate their fundraising with their online networking means that news of challenges to raise funds for Diabetes UK reaches the widest possible audience in the shortest possible time.
The site launched on 11 September 2009, and in the year that followed Diabetes UK has made back at least £3.75 for every pound they invested in the creation of Challenge. In year one:
- 642 challenges set up
- Making a combined total income of £421,709
- 98% of donators are new to the charity
- Core development costs covered within six months
- 5,298 donations made
- Average donation of £28
- 42,225 unique visitors
- 876 visitors in the site's first full month (Oct 09), increased to 8,052 visitors in August 2010
- 84% of people donating on the Challenge site tick the Gift Aid box, compared to 65% on the main Diabetes UK site
The site has also won Best in Class at the Interactive Media Awards and the Communicator Awards’ Award of Excellence.