An evening with the PRCA and DMA – creating successful partnerships

NB Team

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Last night we hosted an informative evening with the PRCA and DMA on the topic of Creating a Successful Partnership between PR and Direct Marketing agencies.

With a focus on charities and not-for-profit organisations, the panel of speakers explored how PR and One to One Marketing agencies can help each other to meet charities’ long-term business objectives.

Kicking off the evening was Tim Kitchin of digital marketing agency, Copper, who gave us an introduction to the industry landscape. In the midst of a seismic shift of cultures from opt-out to permission marketing, and from a push to pull strategy, it’s important for charities to move relationships with their donors on from purely transactional, to building trusted relationships.


Next to take the stage was Maxine Horsman of Tangible, who highlighted the importance of understanding each other’s discipline when working together.

Relationships are not determined by channels so we should not be thinking in this way either. For her, the three key considerations agencies need to understand is to work to the same timings, share the same common objectives, and aim to co-create, rather than create separately and join up at the end.

Maxine used a powerful case study for the Royal British Legion to demonstrate the impact of these two disciplines working together, where 22,000 union flags bearing personal messages of remembrance were pitched on the Arromanches in France – a direct marketing idea that could not have achieved the success it did without having a PR agency involved from the offset.


Last up was Ellie Schofield of Grayling, who spoke about the importance of social media. Ellie said the key to sharable content is to make sure it is something viewers can identify with – make it emotive, and make it informative.

In summary, when it comes to charities and not-for-profit organisations, our efforts should be focussed on coming up with creative and relevant challenges that make people want to take part, as opposed to just raising awareness of the cause.