ASPCA and Its Effective Use of Color
At last week's Engage conference, hosted by Fundraising Success magazine, branding was cited as one of the keys to success during the case study presentations of several nonprofits. For some organizations, the development of their brand has been assisted by the powerful use of color across fundraising channels.
Since 2005, orange has been the "official color" of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). According to the organization's website, the color is "identified with vibrancy and energy," an important asset in the sharpened focus of its mission to protect animals.
At first, orange was merely substituted for blue in previous direct mail efforts (see image below). But in many ASPCA packages received by Who's Mailing What! in the last 2 or 3 years, it has dominated the mailer as much as the pictures or stories of the animals it has served (see image below). Orange has also been used as an accent color, like in the shading of a "letter" from a homeless dog (see image below).
The consistency of this color usage extends to other media. A March 2013 email (see image below) from the ASPCA Store announces to a supporter that April is the month to "GO ORANGE," and features a variety of orange products for sale and reminds him that net proceeds will "IMPACT LIVES." Orange T-shirts, tote bags and leashes in ASPCA orange spread the group's message and reinforce the brand even further.
Orange also represents the group in a powerful way on its official Twitter feed (see image below).
With the strengthened brand identity, trust is reinforced among the ASPCA's stakeholders (the donors, the staff and volunteers, partner groups) as well as the general public. And with that greater comfort level in giving to a stable organization, more money, and more impact, is the result.
Paul Bobnak is the Director of Who's Mailing What!, the most complete library of direct mail and email in the world. Contact Paul at email@example.com. Or follow him on Twitter at @PaulBobnak.