Case Study: Winner of the Best CSR Event at the 2018 ICE Awards
Global are passionate about music but equally passionate about the communities where their broadcasting centres are located across the UK. As a result, they developed a CSR plan called Global Goodness, which includes their very own registered charity, Global’s Make Some Noise which raises money for small but brilliant charities which support children and young people.
Best CRS EVENT - sponsored by ICEBOX
Global Media and Entertainment Group
The Winning Idea The most publicly recognised event Global hold is an on-air radio campaign which reaches a wide audience of listeners across all eight of Global’s radio stations. However, it was clear they needed something to uniquely engage and entertain key VIP stakeholders, partners and supporters in a more special and exclusive fashion. This is where Global’s Make Some Noise Night was born.
Objectives The main objectives was to ensure the guests had a great experience and, of course, raise funds. Global create unforgettable events such as the Capital Summertime Ball, Classic FM Live and The Global Awards. The challenge with putting on a CSR event was that the guest experience needed to remain at a high standard while also fundraising.
In 2017, the event target was to raise over £800K which would account for over 20% of the charity’s overall annual income target. The planning of the event relied heavily on Global minimising production costs and maximising fundraising aspects to meet these ambitious targets.
The event also strived to ensure that 70 pence in the pound goes straight to good causes and in 2017 the event delivered an ROI of 72 pence per pound. This was a fantastic achievement compared to other charity galas - something Global are very proud of achieving from a CSR perspective.
Challenges Global’s Make Some Noise Night is managed by a small team with a handful of external suppliers. As fundraising was a key objective, Global had a key representative from the charity team working closely alongside the event manager responsible for logistics and production. The collaboration between these two roles (as well as with their Talent Manager) was crucial to the event’s success.
As a key player in the music and entertainment business, a Global event wouldn’t be complete without having some of the best music artists performing live and in 2017, guests of the event were treated to performances from Paloma Faith, Louisa Johnson and The Script.
To ensure that Global maintained a high standard and quality of guest experience without encroaching on costs, the Talent Manager ensured to prioritise relationships with record labels so that these performers played for free. However, working with such first rate artists brought other CSR challenges, such as environmental sound considerations.
The venue, Supernova, is a central London ‘pop up’ location where strict music and sound level restrictions are enforced by Westminster Council. Music is what Global are all about and what they pride themselves upon and being experts in, so a cut-off point of 11.30pm for live music was a big problem to overcome.
To prepare for this, Global hired an external sound level controller to monitor the event and ensure they weren’t going above the restrictions. They also built great relationships with the venue licensors and made sure to manage expectations of sound levels and timings far in advance. Having put in this prior thought and hard work to build good relationships, it meant they were quickly able to act when the final artist showed signs of overrunning on the night.
In addition to balancing guest experience and minimising costs from their fantastic live acts, they also had a big fundraising target to meet and they tried to be as innovative as possible with their fundraising mechanics in order to do this.
What set this event aside from other big charity dinners is that none of the fundraising prizes were paid for. Every single one was sourced by the internal team by finding companies to donate prizes for free.
This meant two things for their income: Firstly, as the prizes were not bought from a silent auction supplier, the items were new, unique and exciting for guests who frequent a number of charity galas every year. And secondly, it meant there was no large reserves on items – so the charity received all the money that was bid on the prizes as opposed to the profit over and above the reserve.
In total, the combined silent and live auction raised over £540K from prizes including a dance lesson with Anton Du Beke, tickets to the Wimbledon Men’s Final, and an LA package with business class flights, a stay at the Four Seasons and a chance to watch a recording of ‘The Late Late Show’ with James Corden.
Success The success of the event was measured on two objectives being met - reaching the fundraising target and giving the guests an amazing experience.
Reaching the Fundraising Target - The impact of the money raised at Global’s Make Some Noise Night 2017 is vast. The £870K raised accounted for 25% of the charity’s overall fundraising (+5% on target). £2.5million of this has now gone towards supporting 33 projects in UK, so they can continue their life-changing work with youngsters and their families living with illness, disability or lack of opportunity.
That money will provide 15,088 hours of support for youngsters living with disability, 4,340 hours of much-needed help for young carers, 4,772 hours of counselling for children experiencing illness or bereavement, 4,679 hours of support for young people and their families affected by suicide and homelessness, and much more.
Global recently handed over cheques to the 33 of their projects and were delighted to announce they were able to provide them all with two years worth of funding when they were only expecting one year’s worth!
Providing an amazing guest experience - Feedback from both new and repeat attendees was brilliant.From a strategic perspective, such positive feedback from guests puts Global in good stead for selling tables in 2018. They filmed all aspects of the event and plan to use the post-event video to engage new and old table buyers so they can raise even more money next year.
The Results For Global, what is important about CSR is effectively communicating the difference you’re making to your audience. The pledge moment at the event is where Global talk about one of the projects they support, and follow up with an ask for guests to make a voluntary donation. Previously, this has proved tricky to encourage guests to donate without getting anything back in return and there has always been a worry that powerful charity messaging might dampen high-spirits on the evening.
In 2017, they changed the way they worked the pledge by carefully selecting who did the speaking, improving film content and telling guests ‘how it is’, rather than holding back on emotive case studies. They used a more traditional method of physical pledge cards as opposed to receiving donations via iPads, and encouraged a moment of silence and reflection which gave guests the chance to properly consider how much they could afford to give.
All these things made a huge difference to how much they raised and 2017’s pledge amount grew by a massive £32K on the previous year. The average amount donated by each guest increased by £77, and the number of guests participating increased by 23%. This proved to Global that effective story telling is vital to CSR initiatives and raises significantly more for charities.
The Judges Comments
This submission was a worthy winner of the CSR Award. The entry was very clear about their CSR objectives, how they were measured and how they were achieved. As well as building great relationships with suppliers, there was a close collaboration with the internal team with every stakeholder having a keen eye on innovation.
The entry also recognised that effective and clear communication with the audience had a direct impact on the successful CSR result of the event.
Finally, what stood out was that the winner looked at all aspects of CSR without sacrificing the participant experience or the artists requirements.