Diabetes UK is the current nominated charity partner for the Bupa Great Run Series. The charity has a record number of participants running in the series and is on course to smash its fundraising targets.
We caught up with Mark Fox, Events marketing manager for Diabetes UK, who had some top tips for charities looking for partnerships. We also spoke to him in a bit more detail about the partnership.
Mark’s top tips
- Make it about more than just the event – Look at a potential partner’s strategic goals and try to meet their partnership criteria to increase your chances of teaming up with them. Diabetes UK has a range of joint activities planned with Bupa including Type 2 diabetes risk assessment roadshows, work place risk assessments, which to date have seen over 600 Bupa staff take part, as well as some more in the pipeline.
- Target potential supporters – Set yourself a clear online target, such as how much do you want to raise and how many fundraisers do you want to recruit, then use as many mediums as you can to promote the event. As well as social media and their own communications, Diabetes UK used industry press, such as Runner’s World, to let people know about their places.
- Create a clear user journey – Once a supporter has decided to fundraise for you, make it as easy as possible. Diabetes UK created fundraising page links straight from their promotional material to make sure participants could start fundraising for their event, straight away.
How did this partnership come about?
Every three years, Bupa, title partner of the Great Run Series, chooses a different charity partner. We were pitching against a lot of great charities but I think we were successful because our aims, to promote healthier lifestyles, fit best with Bupa’s aims.
The partnership is about more than just running; we have a whole range of projects we are working with Bupa on, increasing awareness of type 2 diabetes in the UK. The money raised from the Bupa Great Run Series will be used to fund the Bupa and Diabetes UK Healthy Lifestyle Roadshows, which tour the country, offering everyone the opportunity to receive a free Type 2 diabetes risk assessment.
Is the partnership going well so far?
The results of this partnership have been amazing. Through the nine Bupa Great Run Series events, we estimate we will have 10,000 people running and are on target to raise more than £1,000,000.
And how have you got the word out to your supporters?
We’ve been using social media, our own communications, and industry magazines like Runner’s World to get the word out.
We keep in contact with our participants at each stage too. We regularly update them with emails about everything, including event selection, training and fundraising. We also make sure to prompt runners to set up a fundraising page at every stage.
We encourage our runners to use JustGiving pages as we’ve found they are the simplest and easiest to use. We have made sure all our promotional material has event fundraising links that automatically set up their JustGiving fundraising pages with the right race information.
Want to find a place in the Bupa Great Run Series?