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How Pancreatic Cancer UK found repeat success with a Facebook Challenge model

Health and Medical
United Kingdom
Solutions used:
Facebook Challenges
Managed Services

After a successful 2021 Facebook Challenge, Pancreatic Cancer UK was looking to repeat the same results with a second Jog 28 Miles in February 2022 campaign.

By enlisting the support of GivePanel’s Managed Services team and introducing SMS as a communication and stewardship tool, PCUK raised over £200,000 with their second Jog 28 Miles in February Challenge and achieved an average raised of over £300. Here’s how they did it.

Set the scene

Who is Pancreatic Cancer UK?

Pancreatic Cancer UK supports people who have been affected by pancreatic cancer. Their vision is that ‘everyone with pancreatic cancer survives to live long and well.To achieve this, PCUK support those who have been affected with resources and information, fund research breakthroughs and campaign for change, calling for more investment in research and ways to improve and speed up diagnosis.

Having joined GivePanel in 2019, PCUK are no strangers to a Facebook Challenge and have experimented with various formats, including step and squat Challenges, to engage their audience to fundraise. 

What people are saying
It's been a great way for us to reach a new audience and keep our supporters engaged in fundraising, especially through all the lockdowns. We’ve seen that our Facebook challenges have continued to work really well and have helped us reach people of all abilities and in more locations than we would normally reach through our traditional third party events.
- Lauren Hunt
The challenge

Jog 28 Miles in February

A Facebook Challenge is a virtual event that runs solely on Facebook and leverages the power of social networking through ads, groups and fundraisers. This means: 

  • Lower acquisition costs
  • More fundraisers
  • And a chance to meet supporters where they already are!

Facebook Challenges allow PCUK to reach and connect with large audiences that wouldn’t be possible through third party events. In Jog 28 Miles in February, PCUK collected over 1500 supporters’ contact details to add to their supporter database.

The format of a Facebook Challenge also makes their fundraising more inclusive and flexible and opens up their events to all abilities. Through testing various challenge formats, PCUK have found a challenge concept that works for them and their supporters that they can repeat and include in their programme of events.

But what did they do differently this time around? Three things. Firstly, they introduced SMS messaging. PCUK ran a 50/50 test in 2021 and used those learnings to put everyone in the 2022 team on an SMS journey. Secondly, they included medals as an additional, target-based incentive. As well as a t-shirt for registering, fundraisers also received a medal for reaching certain monetary targets. And thirdly, PCUK encouraged family fundraisers through their advertising. In their 2021 Challenge, PCUK noted family fundraisers were popular with their charity and so concentrated some of their ad creative on families who in turn raised more as a family unit.

The GivePanel difference

Meeting supporters where they are

For their 2022 Jog 28 Miles in February Challenge, PCUK enlisted the support of GivePanel’s Managed Services to assist with their stewardship and data management. The support included: 

  • Developing a messaging strategy for PCUK’s supporters appropriate to the event stage and their progress by using a “Welcome Message” and a “Top Fundraiser Message” to specific segmented fundraiser groups
  • The creation of all content for on-page messaging
  • Management and delivery of on-page messaging to all active fundraisers taking part in the challenge, including labeling and internal coding 
  • Daily management of Event Attribution for all non-attributed fundraisers by name-checking the Facebook Challenge group and assigning fundraisers in GivePanel records
  • Regular statistic reports throughout the Challenge
  • An end of Challenge wrap-up report 

By using GivePanel, PCUK have found they have the visibility of data and more staff time to manage Facebook Challenges properly.

“(GivePanel) definitely saves a lot of staff time, which we can spend on more personalized stewardship to our supporters. It gives us a lot more visibility over who’s fundraising for us and what they’re doing so that we can see how specific activities are progressing.”

Pancreatic Cancer UK
Pancreatic Cancer UK
Pancreatic Cancer UK
PCUK case study gallery images

The results

The Challenge in numbers

Facebook Leads
Group Members
Active Fundraisers
Average Raised

Final thoughts

Top tips from Pancreatic Cancer UK

Keep your communications consistent both in terms of timing and who the messages are coming from. Supporters connect with a person!

Test various Challenge formats to see what works best for you and your audience. PCUK trialed step, squat and cycling Challenges at different times of the year before finding a combo that stuck. 

Use GivePanel’s expert Managed Services team to deliver a winning stewardship strategy to all active fundraisers.

Lauren Hunt
Pancreatic Cancer UK

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