United Way case study - Promoting compassion, United Way expands its philanthropic reach

Nonprofit Marketing & Graphic Design for Worldwide Charity Brand

Meet the Client

Since 1922, United Way of Tarrant County has strategically raised and invested money, expertise and other resources to improve lives in the community. The organization prioritizes needs in education, income and health.

Their Objectives

United Way wanted an agency with copywriting, graphic design and photography expertise to produce a quarterly newsletter for its Little Bites, Big Steps health program.

The agency would partner with United Way-funded child care centers, with plans to include photos and quotes of actual families.

United Way also desired a long-term marketing relationship for recurring projects.

The Partnership

At the recommendation of another company, United Way enlisted The Satterfield Agency to bring its vision of a family-focused health newsletter to fruition.

We partnered closely with a vice president in the community development division, launching the initial newsletter series for United Way-funded child care centers in Fort Worth, Texas. As the success of the program grew, United Way received an additional grant to introduce the newsletters to schools in Northeast Tarrant County.

United Way relied on The Satterfield Agency for a variety of other marketing campaigns, including Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, Read Across America, and the annual reports for multiple programs within the organization.

Our Strategies

We first formulated a colorful, kid-friendly design concept for the newsletter, along with the title, Keeping Kids Healthy. We applied a writing style that would catch the attention of parents and children alike, with Q&A articles, expert advice and easy-to-implement tips.

The length of the newsletter was key – three-and-a-half pages with a half-page mailing section. This size facilitated cost-effective mailing plus a generous amount of information still brief enough to read in one sitting.

We conducted interviews and photo shoots at a different school each quarter, and featured some of the highest-quality images in the newsletter. Families responded positively to seeing pictures and quotes from people they knew well.

In addition to community outreaches, United Way frequently worked with The Satterfield Agency to influence corporate/donor audiences. For each initiative, we customized the creative concept and writing style to most effectively communicate with the target audience, while maintaining the consistency of United Way's overall brand.

Our Solutions

The Satterfield Agency launched a quarterly newsletter (available in English and Spanish) filled with exercise ideas, low-fat recipes and other kids' health education. The newsletter was distributed to parents via mail and at United Way events.

We also helped United Way promote Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, a program that sends 500,000 kids worldwide a free, age-appropriate book every month until their 5th birthday. The Satterfield Agency produced an invitation, matching envelope, event program and bookmark to give to fundraiser attendees. In addition, we created a customizable flier (in English and Spanish) to advertise the Imagination Library to low-income parents.

To encourage participation in Read Across America, a nationwide reading celebration, The Satterfield Agency developed an eye-catching, patriotic-themed poster in both English and Spanish. Using the same look-and-feel, we created a print ad for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram newspaper.

As part of a separate but corresponding initiative, The Satterfield Agency produced an online invitation posted to United Way's website. The invitation recruited volunteers for education programs, including Read Across America. We supported the electronic invite with a flier to be handed out in-person to potential volunteers.

The Satterfield Agency later designed a poster-size roadmap depicting various phases of the United Way Learn Well education initiative. We implemented a fun and colorful illustrative design to portray each step of the initiative.

The concept centered around a path with students traveling through the entire roadmap. Each section of the path corresponded with a specific time period in school, e.g., an elementary school bus or high school students riding a moped. We supported the bold design with large subheads and bullets of information, making the text easier to scan or read quickly.

Finally, we helped United Way share the year-end results of several child care programs through a series of annual reports. We created a lively and bright look-and-feel while also reflecting the professional nature of the programs.

The Results

The Keeping Kids Healthy newsletter earned consistent compliments from all audiences – families, school administrators, child care providers and United Way constituents. The program was deemed a success and, as a result, received more grant money for expansion to other geographic areas.

Marketing efforts invested in Dolly Parton's Imagination Library and Read Across America led to high participation, as well as renewed grants to sustain the program in subsequent years.

The design and production of multiple annual reports helped communicate the effectiveness of United Way programs to its donors. These initiatives proved to be a vital factor in securing future grants to continue and/or grow the programs.

Contact Us Today

The quality of the productions — both writing and photography — is top-notch, and everyone with whom I've shared our newsletter has been very complimentary.

Faye Beaulieu, United Way of Tarrant County