25 hours of silence
In 2003 three young filmmakers from Southern California journeyed to Africa in search of a story. Their travels took them to Uganda, where the trio filmed their experiences and eventually turned that footage into a documentary.
Viewed by thousands across the globe, that documentary would raise global awareness of the conflict and lead to the birth of a new organization, Invisible Children. In a matter of a few short months, the young men's search for a story had officially evolved into a mission to end Africa's longest running war.
Like any other ambitious undertaking, the pursuit of this mission has required significant funding over the years. Invisible Children has risen to meet this challenge by crafting some of the most innovative fundraising campaigns in the world. Their latest effort, the "25" campaign, was no exception. Representing the organization's first foray into peer-to-peer fundraising, the "25" campaign leveraged StayClassy's software to power a truly massive online fundraising effort.
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"StayClassy has brought a level of professionalism and service that exceeded our expectations. It was our first time using personal fundraising pages and we far surpassed our goals for the '25' campaign."
The organization planned to fund this ambitious "protection plan" by having 25,000 supporters raise $25 dollars each through personal fundraising web pages. The "25" campaign, launched to commemorate the twenty fifth anniversary of the outbreak of violence in Uganda, would span eight weeks and end with a symbolic day of silence on April 25th. At the end of the final day, supporters would gather at eighteen different locations across the country to break the silence in a unified show of support for the cause.
With the help of StayClassy's online fundraising platform, Invisible Children was able to successfully conduct this large-scale effort, ultimately shattering its own lofty fundraising goal. The process focused on simplicity and user-experience. Personal fundraising pages could be created in under a minute. Supporters used StayClassy's social media sharing features to spread the word and collect donations. All aspects of the process were fully white labeled with Invisible Children's branding, creating a seamless experience for campaign participants. The approach paid off. In the end, Invisible Children was able to get over 32,000 of the participants to create fundraising pages.
Getting supporters engaged is great, but keeping them going over eight weeks is a different kind of challenge.
Invisible Children knew that it had to continuously motivate supporters. Relying on StayClassy's back-office, the team compiled contact lists so staff could personally encourage fundraisers with e-mail messages and phone calls. StayClassy's reporting allowed top fundraisers to be identified and thanked, the analytical information helped staff make weekly projections of the campaign's progress, and the "wall" feature allowed Invisible Children to communicate directly with all of its supporters at once.
Towards the end of the campaign, one particularly exciting message was posted on each fundraiser's page; the Invisible Children team would be bringing the "25" campaign to Oprah. That trip to the Queen of Daytime TV resulted in $600,000 being processed through the organization's StayClassy account in a few short days, bringing the campaign total to a whopping $1,744,000.
Since the success of the "25" campaign, Invisible Children has gone on to launch several more fundraising campaigns using StayClassy. Give us a call or shoot us an email and we’ll get started planning your own version of the "25" campaign; our staff is here, ready and waiting to help!
"When we heard Invisible Children was going to be on Oprah, there was enormous excitement, shortly followed by panic. After the last show aired & we had helped raise $600k in one day with no down-time, it was a proud moment for everyone.
StayClassy Servers = 1 ; Oprah Traffic = 0"