Save the Children - Every Last Child


Key Points

  • Save the Children wanted to raise awareness of the plight of vulnerable children
  • They ran a TV campaign for mass reach followed by more personalised VOD activity
  • As a result, they saw a 21% increase in brand favourability

The Challenge

Save the Children have been fighting discrimination against children for almost 100 years. But millions of children die or see their futures destroyed because they are a girl, a refugee or from an ethnic minority.

Save the Children set the ambitious goal for all children to survive, thrive and be protected by 2030. In order to have a chance of achieving this change, they needed to focus on the most vulnerable and marginalised children. They needed a campaign that was impossible to ignore in order to create awareness of their work in supporting children who have been discriminated against. They wanted to stand out amongst the vast number of charities and to communicate their new brand promise ‘We do whatever it takes to save children’. They needed to inspire people with the positive work done by Save the Children, whilst also connecting the audience to the stories of children left behind.

Save the Children wanted to reach those people who were prepared to help them give aid to the most vulnerable children. The appeal needed to show that Save the Children went beyond helping children to helping to reach ALL children, whatever it takes and this idea was encapsulated in the phrase ‘Every Last Child’.

Their key objectives were:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Raise awareness that Save the Children is the organisation that does whatever it takes for the most vulnerable children
  • Introduce the ‘Every Last Child’ campaign
  • Engage existing supporters with the campaign issue

The TV Solution

Although the situation is complicated, it was important that the message was communicated in a straightforward way that was simple to understand. Save the Children wanted to be inspirational and also personal – connecting people to the stories of children – and they felt that TV was the medium best placed to achieve their objectives.

They opted for a mass reach campaign to make people aware of Save the Children. They followed that up with some contextual advertising to ensure people understood the issues that Save the Children stood for and finished with a campaign targeting families and parents to encourage people actively to support Save the Children. 

TV was the loudspeaker for the inspirational work that Save the Children was doing.

The Plan

They launched the campaign with an ad in Good Morning Britain, immediately following the appearance of charity ambassadors Dominic West and Myleene Klass who were on the show talking about refugees and Save the Children and so was a perfect environment in which to launch the ad.

To create a big impact on day one, they used a roadblock which reached 9.5 million adults. They also chose hard hitting programmes in order to provide the right context for the ad to be seen. These included:

  • Children on the Frontline
  • One Born Every Minute
  • Aidan: The Rarest Boy in the World
  • What Would Be Your Miracle

In addition, they upweighted news and current affairs programmes and shows such as Peston on Sunday and The Agenda.

Whilst the TV campaign was inspiring, they also used VOD and online display to be more personal and made three films highlighting the perils facing three individual children. The activity included:

  • VOD that invited the audience to meet the children, one by one through an interactive overlay that ran over the TV ad
  • They had the films placed in contextually relevant content online and used sequential videos to target users
  • They then used display ads to retarget users with creative featuring the child whose case study they engaged with to increase personalisation and to generate action (=donation)


  • 21% increase in brand favourability (source: TubeMogul brand uplift study)
  • They achieved stand out in the charity sector, averaging an ad awareness score of 7.7 across the six week campaign - compared to a sector average of 4.6 (source: Brand Index)
  • 137% increase in site traffic on the day of the TV roadblock
  • Completion rate of online video above target at 83% (highest completion rate of any online video campaign for Save the Children)
  • +21% more positive association of Save the Children when the TV ad was seen in conjunction with online
  • Cost per view for the online video was 8% below target at 3p per user


Combining TV and VOD allowed us to ensure that our message that the world’s forgotten children needed us wouldn’t be ignored. TV helped reach large numbers quickly and VOD and sequential targeting allowed us to deliver our powerful message through emotive stories of forgotten children. The campaign encouraged participation and donations from people who took the time to take action and help us reach every last child.

Laura Solomon, Head of Marketing Communications, Save the Children


Sector: Charity

Brand: Save the Children

Campaign objectives: To raise awareness of Save the Children and the work they do

Target Audience: ABC1 adults 35-54 with children in their lives

Budget: £1.9m

Campaign Dates: 26th April – 5th June 2017

TV Usage: 60 and 40 second spots

Creative Agency: Adam&EveDDB

Media Agency:  the7stars

Digital Agency: 360i

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