IPPF charity -
paid ads on social and search

A micro budget project for an international charity to discover what audiences to target for digital ads and outreach

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The Brief

The International Planned Parenthood Federtion, or IPPF, is an international charity foundation that champions sexual and reproductive health and rights for all, especially the under-served. 

They partnered with CFD to find a way to attract donations and email subscriptions, the goal being to use digital to extend their reach over the course of three months. At the end of the three months, CFD trained their internal team to manage ads using the audience CFD had discovered would best respond to their ads. Three months was not enough time to develop a good funnel for donations, but was ample time to discover what audiences would be interested in learning more about IPPF, getting them into the funnel for further touchpoints that could then lead to donations.

Approach

To help IPPF achieve its goals, CFD created a strategy for the two most popular advertising platforms – Google and Facebook – to test their performance in terms of driving subscriptions to the IPPF email list. Given the short length of the engagement, we agreed to get people into the top of the funnel with the aim being that IPPF could further engage these followers to drive donations after several other touchpoints. We were looking for the best available opportunities in terms of targeting methods, financial efficiency and potential effectiveness.

Facebook was chosen as an ads platform due to its available targeting methods, which can accurately determine people interested in donations, charity, sexual and gender equality, women’s rights, feminism, sexual healthcare, etc. It stood to reason that through targeting, we would be able to find people interested in both making donations and subscribing.

IPPF ads screenshot

Charity organizations should lead by example, which is why we decided to base advertising creatives around photos and videos of IPPF activities around the world with texts focused on how people could support IPPF. The best performing creatives were those that motivated people to subscribe or to donate – and were images or videos that showed the IPPF team in action around the globe.

ippf ads screenshot
IPPF was also a recipient of a Google Ads Grant, which helps nonprofits by directly funding their ads. Because IPPF was working with smaller budgets, we found this to be a financially advantageous way to both increase budgets on Facebook, while still being able to run ads on both platforms. Google Search Ads is also an effective tool for getting the most accurate targeting, as Google uses keywords like “donate to charity”, “charity foundation to donate to”, etc which can signify someone’s interest in donations.

We used those keywords alongside dynamic ads based on several headlines and descriptions but focused on calling people to support IPPF’s mission.

Ads on each platform were intended to run for a month and a half each.

RESULTS

CFD reached 24,240 people, drove 13 subscriptions and 2 donations with a very low budget. These results showed that the best advertising platform for charity organizations is Facebook due to its ability to drive awareness and its available targeting methods.
ippf ads screenshot
In terms of the ad creatives, it was discovered that single picture ads could be very cheap to deliver and very effective in terms of driving conversions. While we used a variety of different images in our ads, the ad shown above consistently had the top performing visual asset by a significant amount.
ippf ads screenshot
As for Google, despite being financially efficient the Ads Grant only allowed for text based search ads. This proved to be an ineffective form of advertising for IPPF which could likely benefit from having image-based ads on the platform based on the performance shown on Facebook.