A walk through Manifesto’s digital marketing strategy

Illustrative person holding giant ruler to measure digital marketing

In this three-part mini-series, Manifesto offers you a look into its digital marketing strategy. Our first post sets the scene, breaking down our team’s approach and how it’s developed since we began this part for the business more than three years ago.


Back in 2017, Manifesto started up its digital marketing function. Whilst we’re not a traditional media agency, we wanted to share the expertise we’ve gathered on client campaigns with the wider industry. Because charities play an integral part in our society. And with public perception of their importance on the decline, it’s more important than ever that we share insights into the sector’s progress.

Our specialties fall under experience – be that digital, physical, or a mixture of the two – and the technology which comes with it. We have no minimum spends, kick backs or commissions with any media partner. This removes all commercial bias in media planning, and is essential to ensure we’re serving media plans that are based on data, and best serve our clients’ goals. In other words, we retain full data ownership and transparency for our clients.

In a nutshell, we’re here to motivate people to contribute towards amazing causes. That’s really it. Three years later and with more than 40 charities in our agency portfolio, we have a broad, varied understanding of supporters and their digital behaviours. This allows us to engineer the full, end-to-end digital supporter journey – from media touchpoints to conversion.


Our approach

Data takes the lead

We utilise intelligent digital tracking, but it’s still not a widely adopted practice in the sector. Data should take the lead. After all, it’s proven to translate into real value. According to a Deloitte survey of businesses, nearly half said analytics helps them make better decisions.

With data at the forefront, organisations can move with the pace of change in digital. Rather than relying on best practices alone, we action our technical expertise to test and optimise throughout our clients’ campaigns.


Times it by six

Our £1.8 million paid media spend has generated more than six times the amount – £11.9 million – in income for charities.

We’ve worked with a whole host of charities and business areas. Be that in donations, events sign-ups, crowdfunding asks, lead generation, or legacy giving.

But well-performing campaigns aren’t the only achievement we’re proud of. Perhaps more importantly, we take pride in the way our clients’ capabilities grow and their confidence develops with the help of our guidance.


Our work is never ‘done’

At Manifesto, our focus goes far beyond the success of a single campaign. Our broader goal is to empower organisations and their teams to be fully involved in strategic decision-making.

We do this by taking the teams we work with through a digital marketing transformation. Because digital marketing is never ‘done’. Particularly when we look at the trust trajectory of the third sector – whilst trust in charities has modestly increased, it’s still below pre-2016 levels.

Rather than rest on our laurels, we want to evolve continuously alongside digital to build this trust back up. So instead of treating each campaign we do like a closed bookend, we open it up, analyse it, review its success and use its key performance indicators (KPIs) to inform future projects.


Check out our next article in this mini-series, where we be reflect on our work with clients throughout 2020. A year which threw all sorts of new challenges at the charity sector, we explain how our clients not only survived, but outperformed previous campaign records.

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