Happy 200th Birthday to the RNLI – a Blog Which Might Just Save Your Life.


Back in 2020 I was told that we had the opportunity to work with the RNLI. They had very ambitious growth plans. It’s worth remembering that during this time it was also illegal to walk around outside for longer than 15 minutes, so the thought of working with one the UK’s most cherished charities and getting the chance to stare at pictures of beaches, seemed almost too good to be true. 

Four years on and they’ve had the largest growth since 2019, amongst the top 20 charities (Source: Nielsen). So, it seems fitting that today on their 200th birthday (Also known as a bi-centenary, which makes sense) we celebrate the brilliant work they do and the highlights that we’ve contributed towards in the past 4 years. 

Taking on an Award-winning Campaign (And Beating it) 

In 2019, the RNLI road tested an individual giving Christmas campaign named Perfect Storm. They hadn’t run anything like it for years and it was a roaring success. They picked up an Institute of Fundraising award for their record-breaking work. It was a little daunting taking it on as our first project in 2020. Through detailed modelling we unpicked and optimised their campaign strategy. This saw us help them break those records year on year, building a brilliant always on Individual Giving programme that we’re all immensely proud of. 

A Sector Leading Legacy Programme 

Six out of ten lifeboat launches are only possible thanks to legacy donations to the RNLI. It’s a huge part of what they do. Again, when we started working with them their Legacy programme was in its infancy. But looking at it today the teams collectively have pulled together something quite extraordinary, I often speak to other charities who say how envious they are of the RNLI legacy programme and you can see why.  

Products like Launch a Memory where you get to put your name on the side of a boat, alongside the wonderful opportunities they provide for legacy donors to meet the charity and engage with the crew are just a few of the highlights. It’s only fitting then that this year the programme we’ve grown together is nominated for five Smee and Ford Legacy awards. 

Actually Saving Lives 

Without a doubt, our proudest moment together is saving lives. We have run multiple water safety campaigns and turned the briefs on their heads at times to meet their core KPI of saving lives. And it’s worked. There are countless stories you can google of people whose lives have been saved by remembering the water safety advice* from the ads.  

I never get bored of talking about it and it’s what makes the partnership so special when you really hear about the impact. 

Needless to say, we love the RNLI. Thank you to their teams for 4 brilliant years with us and all their brave volunteers for 200 years of lifesaving work. 


*If you find yourself in danger in the water then float. Read/watch this and share widely. It might just save you or someone you know: https://rnli.org/safety/float 

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