In a collaboration with Helen Holden we rebranded Caring Together from Carers Trust Cambridge Peterborough and Norfolk.
The charity had undergone several mergers in its lifetime and the name told the tale. It needed a clear, new identity that could frame the work and impact it was delivering across East Anglia.
Audience insights research identified a strong theme of connectedness – people who used the charity’s services felt connected to support and connected to other local people in similar circumstances. We tested several name options but in the end Caring Together best summed up the ambitions of the organisation and the impact people using its services told us about.
The new name was paired with a bold new strapline ‘So that carers have choices’ in a clear pledge from Caring Together to give carers back some choice in their lives. Becoming in carer is often not a choice and it can feel very limiting in terms of the impact on the carer. However, choice is important for both carer and the person they care for and this clear statement drives the way Caring Together designs and delivers it services.
Helen designed an inclusive logo and gave the Carers Trust former colour palette a bright, contemporary update to help Caring Together stand out in its marketplace.
"It is like we have always had this brand. It is so straightforward and easy to use." Miriam Martin, CEO
Working with Emily Hayes of Semiotics for Brands, we are running a brand research project for Mind, identifying ways they can reach young black men. The mental health inequalities are dramatic for this audience. They are among the lowest users of support services and present in the highest numbers at points of crisis.
Early on in the project, it became apparent that collaborative communications, producing content and campaigns, in collaboration with young black British men was likely to be the most effective way for Mind to reach them. We therefore took a co-production approach in running the project and focus groups – supported by JJ Bola and Quince Garcia together with local Minds in Croydon and Haringey and the MisLit group.
We produced a brand communications toolkit and guidance on co-producing communications with young black men and men with lived experience of mental health. This captured how the findings of our research can be applied in practice.
"Participatory communication is the theory and practices of communication used to involve people in the decision-making of the development process. It intends to return to the roots of its meaning, which, similarly to the term community, originate from the Latin word 'communis', i.e. common (Mody, 1991)."
We carried out an extensive audit of Alzheimer’s Society’s 3000 local services across England, Northern Ireland and Wales. We started by devising an evaluation framework to objectively assess whether marketing materials complied with brand guidelines and met criteria for marketing good practice and finished with a presentation to the Operations Leadership Team.
Along the way we analysed hundreds of marketing materials, services specifications, job descriptions and strategic plans, carried out a mystery shopping exercise and interviewed staff – from the most senior leaders through managers of regional services to the people who service users first contact.
Using an iterative approach, the audit built up a comprehensive analysis of existing activity – where marketing was being carried out effectively and the incidences where resources were not used efficiently, including significant budget savings. The final report presented recommendations for changes to strategy and delivery practices that should now mean marketing supports the services strategy and is integrated into other areas of work, nationally and regionally. A central recommendation was that Alzheimer’s Society adopts a relationship marketing strategy responsive to service users’ needs and requirements over the long term.
The Society has appointed a member of staff to manage services marketing and it is really satisfying to see our recommendations providing the blueprint for that role.
"The reports and recommendations that Red Pencil produced for us were succinct, rich, deeply practical and very, very helpful. It is no mean feat to take a project of the size of auditing marketing of our local services and distil it into the strategies and actions to support our future service development." Kathryn Quinton, head of marketing and brand
We won a commission to work with Engineers Without Borders to carry out an audit of their fundraising and communications before writing an integrated fundraising and communications strategy. We worked in interactive session with the staff team to interrogate the operating environment for EWB-UK and its fundraising relationships before presenting a comprehensive report to the Board. Typically we would start writing strategies by looking at the organisational outcomes (the desired change) and outputs (how change will be measured) and then align fundraising and communications activities to those organisational objectives. However, Engineers Without Border was ‘between’ strategy development stages so we used a Theory of Change approach to align recommended fundraising and communications activities to established best practice in those areas.
Fundraising clients include: Adfam, Bedford and Luton Community Foundation, Camden Citizen’s Advice Bureau, Ezer Leyoldos, Choice Support, Why Me? and Women and Children FirstView Project
"We commissioned Red Pencil to comprehensively review our approach to fundraising and communications, something that was much needed in light of numerous unsuccessful funding bids, a disinterested membership and a key message that was confusing to an external audience. We still have much to do but Red Pencil's work, particularly the outputs and tools provided, have given us independent and impartial evidence to support the changes we need to make and a solid starting position from which to build." Doug Harper, CEO