Channel 4

Charity Dash for Cash with PayPal

Channel 4 will host a very special race between 8 specially trained Turkeys competing on behalf of 8 special charities - all brought together by PayPal.

The Big Idea

Charities rely on cash, especially at Christmas.

Whilst 2016-7 saw charity increase (61% of people donated £9.7b), among 18-34’s this was increasingly time not money (eg 23% of students volunteer).

2017 also saw cash became the minority payment (46% transactions), especially among 18-34s who turn from the high street to their phones at Christmas. PayPal doesn’t believe that cashless should mean heartless.The donate button addresses this, we needed to give this traction. Cue Turkey Dash.

Working with Aardman Animations, Turkey Dash was a race with eight animated turkeys, each representing a charity, powered by donations – the more cash, the faster the dash. Our challenge was to create a moment charities and donors could connect to.

Making it Happen

As charity begins at home we identified an evening of Christmas telly as a new giving moment. Here people are happy, have their phone (plus donate button) in hand and, thanks to the likes of John Lewis, have an increasingly empathetic, giving spirit.

But we needed more than a tug on the heart strings, something people could be part of and as central to Christmas as Sally Army brass bands. We needed to turn a race into a media event. With a track record in engaging our audience in sport we worked with Channel 4, securing a two-minute-long ‘live’ peak broadcast ad break just before Christmas. We launched three weeks out on Giving Tuesday – the day after Cyber Monday, setting the turkeys loose across TV, Social and Digital, with an animated Scarlett Moffatt, star of Channel 4’s Gogglebox , training the turkeys and encouraging viewers to get involved. Blue Cross named its turkey Gregory Peck, RNLI - Captain McStuffing, CLIC Sargent- CLUCK Sargent, LGBT Foundation - Rainbow Rebel, while Nurse Feathers ran for Sue Ryder, Poppy Pecksalot for Royal British Legion, Sleigh My Name for Save the Children, and Happy Go Clucky for Mental Health Foundation.

The charities were all off the blocks from the start, building support for their, um, athlete. Even Steven Fry tweeted his backing for Rainbow Rebel. All donations ‘trained’ turkeys and we showed their progress with ‘Bootcamp’ spots across Channel 4 and social. Donations were valid right up to the event which we staged, appropriately, in Jamie &Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast (no turkeys were harmed in the shooting of this event) and fronted by Channel 4 F1’s Steve Jones with Steve Cram doing the voice over adding to the sporting vibe. Viewers tuned in to see Captain McStuffing win it by a giblet, accompanied by a Facebook Live event which brought together representatives from all eight charities to join in the celebration.

Turkey Dash connected to 76% of 18-34s an average seven times
PayPal charity awareness increased from 8% to 13%

The Results

Turkey Dash connected to 76% of 18-34s an average seven times and 1.3M people tuned in for the race. PayPal charity awareness increased from 8% to 13%, with donate button activity rising from 26% to 33% - that’s a lot of people who can continue to keep giving. All donations went to the PayPal Giving Fund which ensured charities received 100% of the money raised. A whopping £177k!