1) Hi there I'm Rob Mansfield and I work at the charity Age UK – where I'm in charge of digital content. Tonight I’m here to talk to you about how we changed our online donation culture, through just one campaign. Tonight I'm going to talk to you about how we revolutionised our approach to the way we approach online donation, specfically for one of our annual campaigns – Spread the Warmth. I'll talk about what we did, what did and didn’t worked and what I learned as a result.
OK, to begin with it’s hands up time... Can you please put your hands up if you have a parent or grandparent over the age of 60 who is digitally-literate Right, now keep your hands up if you have a similar relative aged over 70 Now, over 80... OK, that’s really interesting... – let’s try to remember that for a bit later
Why? Well, we've either tried to be too clever – we produced Lionel's Wheel of Warmth in our first year, encouraging people to spin and get a random act of kindness to carry out,.
More than 1m more than second-biggest 25-34
1 in 6 pensioners (1.8 million or 16% of pensioners in the UK) live in poverty, defined as 60% of median income after housing costs Pensioners are also the biggest group of people on the brink of poverty with 1.2 million on the edge 1 in 3 of our users visit our Money section on the site Every year, £5.5bn worth of benefits that older people are entitled to goes unclaimed; these are things such as Pension Credit, Housing Benefit and Attendance Allowance For this reason, we focus a lot on content around money.
When we relaunched as Age UK, we really had to tread carefully using a celebrity ambassador. We managed to get Ian McKellen and Brian Cox. They were seen as unthreatening and people our audience could relate to... Last June, Paul McCartney celebrated his 70th birthday. On our Facebook wall, we posted something innocent about it, with a link to a video of him performing... The vitriol we got was quite startling. That’s not to say we don’t talk to famous people... But there has to be a good reason, other than just ‘they’re in a film’
We don’t write feature-length essays on the site, but we know that a page of more than 500 words holds no fears for our audience. Equally, we offer PDFs as a way of getting much more detailed information and advice on a topic – for example, paying for residential care. We’ve considered ditching them totally, but for the moment our user research shows that our audience really like PDFs – downloading them and reading them ‘at their leisure’.
Again – this might seem like a sweeping generalisation, but our audience doesn’t spend all day watching videos on YouTube or glued to an internet radio station. They like iPlayer and they’ll watch a short video or listen to something if it’s totally relevant, but they have better things to be doing.
In our research, without exception users quoted these sort of brands that they buy/interact with. At Age UK, we know that ‘trust’ is a key factor for why people come to us (and return), so we ensure our Information and Advice is as watertight as it can be. We have information specialists and a research team who check facts and figures. This also informs how we go about producing content. I’ve always gone with mantra of quality over quantity. It’s about producing something that has a value to our users – be it a real-life story,
Tone of voice
As with most age groups, mobile traffic has risen but there seems to be a particular fancy for iPads in general. In fact, currently our mobile audience is 50% iPad traffic Of our mobile traffic – half of it comes from iPads. In fact, it’s also worth pointing out that just because our audience is older, doesn’t mean they’re not up-to-date. By and large, they use more recent operating systems and also love Chrome and Firefox…
Do older people really use the internet? Content strategy at A
Do old people actually usethe internet?OR: Content Strategy @ Age UKBy Rob Mansfield
Age UK in 2013...3 National Partners: Age Cymru, Age NI, Age Scotland169 Local partners2 financial services companies470+ Age UK shops500+ local friendship centres and older people’s forums1 Biomedical research charity1 International sister charity for overseas relief
Older people in the UK…• There are now more people in the UK aged 60 andabove than there are under 18• There are 10.3 million people aged 65+ in the UK• There are well over 21 million people aged 50 yearsand over, over a third of the total UK population• There are now over 14m people in the UK aged 60+• Over 1.4 million people are aged 85 or overSource: ONS, April 2013
Older people on the internet…?Over-55s are the dominant group in the UK, with morethan 9m unique online visitors during 2012Source: comScore 2013
BUT….In the third quarter of 2012,5.3m people aged 65+ havenever been online– 54% - Dont need Internet(not useful, not interesting,etc)– 22% - Lack of skills– 15% - Equipment coststoo highSource: ONS
What we used to look likeAge Concern and Help the Aged websites used tofollow the standard IA of a charity website –internally focussed, rather than user-focussed.After many months research, user testing, focusgroups, etc, we decided to go down the user-centric route that exists now, based on ourInformation & Advice being the core reasonpeople come to us, as a charity.
So we went topic-based...We divvyed up our Information and Advice content (which is oneof our Primary services) into relevant topic areas and based thecore part of the site around that – our five pillars.And we put most of the rest into other categories, such asProducts & Get Involved…We’re not a one-issue charity, which goes some way to explainreasons that people come to us…
What older people do online...55+s now account for more than 20% of all people whogo online. This reflects a growth of 11% during 2012.From our own research, we know that:68% of our users are aged 50+41% of our users are aged 60+Of our users aged 60+:86% have bought something online45% have downloaded software32% have communicated on a forum or social network
On the Age UK site...• 60% of users are looking for information:– Either for themselves– Or for someone they help care for• 14% want to find out about a product• 13% for professional/academic reasons• 9% to donate/volunteer/support
A very simple strategy...• To make our Information and Advice as clear, simpleand accessible as possible• To reaffirm our brand messages: we’re notabout age, we’re about people• To promote our key campaignsand services• To promote our other productsand raise income
I could show you the usual stuff now…Case studiesVideoBlogsAudioNews InfographicsCalculators
What we know about our users…1. Money is theirbiggest concern
What we know about our users…2. They don’treally likecelebrities
What we know about our users…3. They like in-depth content…
What we know about our users…4. Rich media – naah, not so much
What we know about our users…5. They like big, trusted brands
What we know about our users…6. They hate advertising
What we know about our users…7. They hate being stereotypedI’m intelligent. I worked inthe pharma industry for along time. I can spotquackery at 10 pacesI feel really childish.I don’t want to feelold.”I’ve got no interest invirtual friends. I knowwho my friends are.”I buy almosteverythingonline
What we know about our users…8. They loveto speaktheir mind
What we know about our users…9. They love iPads
What we know about our users…10. They do everything you do online......just a bit more slowly