RNLI overhauls digital infrastructure to target younger donors

| 24th Oct 14

In a bid to appeal to the next generation of donors, the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) is undergoing a major overhaul of its marketing strategy and digital infrastructure.

Digital transformation manager, Neil Thornburn, told The Drum that the charity is working with Bournemouth University to understand how to better target the youth audience.

He said: “Rather than chasing the 22 year-olds now – because by the time we get there they’ll be gone – what we’ve done is to look to the 15 year-olds to understand the way they absorb the internet and share content, because it is so completely different than the way a 20 year-old will use the internet. If we can start to change the way that we create content and push messaging, and start to drive change now, by the time they [the audience] get to their early twenties we have a new set of people that we can start to target. It’s a challenge and it’s essentially the polar opposite of our historic target audience.”

Additional digital projects include a revamp of the charity’s website, exploration of Snapchat and Instagram and accepting Bitcoin donations.

Luke Williams, social media innovation officer said: “It’s been very encouraging; we had an initial spike in donations but it has continued and we see a donation every couple of days. We realised that it will open us up to new audiences and supporters and one of the things we’ve found from comments on platforms like Reddit is that it has been really well received.”