Valentines dayFirefly uses data on spending habits to boost Valentine’s Day shoppers for Give as you Live

Valentine’s Day is big business for UK retailers – in fact, they make millions (£595m at last full count in 2014) during this time of year. Our client, Give as you Live, is an online shopping website with a heart through which shoppers can donate to charities without spending a penny extra.   Raising awareness during retail peaks helps convert online shoppers to Give as you Live users, and as they buy something for their special day or special someone, they also make a donation to a charity of their choice.  It’s doubling the love.

Using Valentine’s Day as a hook was both a challenge and an opportunity for Firefly. The challenge was competing with many companies, including major retailers, looking to piggyback the day and sell their products. The opportunity was that this day is firmly on the media’s agenda.

With these points in mind, Firefly crafted a campaign that would stand out from others and tie into Give as you Live’s objective of increasing sign-ups. Firefly worked with Give as you Live to commission independent market research to reveal how many people are purchasing gifts, how much people are planning on spending and how far in advance they are planning gift buying. Online shoppers are spread all over the UK, so Firefly ensured that the research could be able to be split by the UK’s top cities in order to target regional titles.

These findings provided Firefly with a wealth of data to approach national, lifestyle and regional media with different story angles to generate coverage for Give as you Live. For example, the Daily Mirror reported on the news by listing the most romantic cities in the UK based on average spend on Valentine’s Day, whilst the Daily Star highlighted that we spend more on Pancake Day than on Valentine’s Day.

Wringing every ounce from the market research, Firefly targeted media in all 19 cities targeted during the research, achieving results in the likes of Edinburgh Evening News and Nottingham Post.

Firefly was able to elevate Give as you Live from other retailers looking to hijack Valentine’s Day by weaving in Give as you Live’s USP – which is a donation to the shopper’s favourite charity using the commission paid by the retailers linked to the site.

Never wanting to miss an opportunity, Firefly also knew that retail is a key audience to reach and used these findings, with a different angle, to target retail media. Give as you Live is connected with over 4,000 retailers and is always looking to grow this figure. Give as you Live featured in retail titles like Talking Retail, maintaining its presence and awareness amongst this cohort.

Firefly and Give as you Live use tools such as Google Analytics to track shoppers that reach the site as a result of PR. We know that during the campaign shopper traffic rose by 11% and transactions have increased substantially from last year. Charitable donations are still being calculated as the money flows through, but we can already see that the shopper revenue targets have been smashed due to an uplift in organic search – people typing ‘Give as you Live’ in Google – as well as massively increased sign-up conversion rates. Cupid’s arrow hit the financial targets this year!

We all love shopping, especially at Christmas time for your nearest and dearest. But what if you could raise money for charity whilst you shopped, all for free…?

This is the essence of Give as you Live, which works with more than 4,000 of the world’s biggest retailers to redirect a percentage of each purchase to a charity of the shopper’s choice.

If it’s free money for charity, there must be a catch – right? For once, no, it’s all above board and bona fide. So far, Give as you Live has helped raised more than £6.5m for good causes across the UK.

This year, Firefly worked with Tots100, a community of active parenting bloggers, to raise awareness of the free charity donations that Give as you Live generates at Christmas.

Experian and trade group IMRG estimate that £1.1bn was spent online on Black Friday purchases this year – a whopping 36% increase on last year. If everybody used Give as you Live to do their online shopping, it could have generated £27.5m for good causes* without it costing shoppers a penny.

In order to make Give as you Live THE destination for smart and socially responsible Christmas shopping, Tots100 helped us recruit 20 prominent bloggers to write a festive gift guide for their readers.

Whether it’s food, furniture or family games and kids’ toys, we left it up to the bloggers to feature products that were right for them.

Each blog (see full list below) went live in November in order to coincide with Give as you Live’s Christmas campaign, #MerryGivemas. We saw some amazing creativity; one blogger – RocknRollMum – selected an array of beautiful vintage-style gifts, and another – Notanothermummyblog – chose lots of pretty and sparkly items.

We made sure all of the featured products had their own web links, including a tracking code, so we could monitor the number of clicks and sales through the blogs. Thousands of clicks were registered in the first few weeks, with new sign-ups and hundreds of pounds being spent as a result of the guides.

The numbers are still rolling in and the final count will be made after the last-minute Christmas sales rush is finally over.

In true Christmas spirit, Give as you Live will reward the most successful and creative blogger with a £250 high street voucher, there will also be five £50 vouchers for runners up.

To do your online Christmas shopping (or any online shopping for that matter), sign-up to Give as you Live today.

Full list of #MerryGivemas bloggers:

  2. Motherhood diaries – The Ultimate Parenting Gift Guide – Give as you Live #MerryGivemas
  3. Me and my shadow – Give as you live: Christmas Wish List for Foodies
  4. Baby Buddeting – My Give As You Live Gift Guide
  5. You Baby Me Mummy – Christmas Corkers for under £20 from Give as you Live
  6. The ramblings of a formerly rock N roll mum – Quirky and Pretty Gift Guide #MerryGivemas
  7. Zena’s Suitcase – Baby & toddler charity gift ideas
  8. Emma & Three – Christmas shopping for active fun teenagers
  9. Amuse your bouche – 11 brilliant Christmas gifts for bloggers
  10. Notanothermummyblog – My ultimate Christmas gift guide… with extra feelgood factor
  11. Hollybobbs – Top Toys For Christmas With Give As You Live
  12. Little Stuff – The Best Mug Gift Guide | #MerryGivemas
  13. Le Coin de Mel – 20 Christmas gifts £20 & under
  14. We’re going on an adventure – Christmas Gift List #MerryGivemas
  15. Cherished by Me – Give As You Live Gift Guide for Foodies
  16. OHSOAMELIA – 10 Great Gifts For Bloggers | The Bloggers Gift Guide
  17. Bark Time – Pimp Your Kitchen Gift Guide – The Power of Red
  18. Mum Mummy MUM! – Great Christmas Gifts from Give As You Live
  19. Jacintaz Three – Make Christmas Merry with Give as you Live
  20. Kiddy Charts – 8 great gifts to help your kids to love their food

*Based on 2.5% commission


With the amount of online content and social media in our everyday lifestyle, it’s no surprise that digital PR campaigns are now an important staple in modern PR and advertising.

Give as you Live wanted a stronger social presence and to reach a younger audience that likes to shop, and Firefly advised collaborating with a fashion YouTube vlogger. While traditional media is still valuable, YouTuber popularity is growing fast, and would provide access to a younger audience as well as an authentic assessment of Give as you Live and how they see it in their everyday lives. youtubecomments

Firefly created a campaign plan, including researching the right talent, reaching out and securing a YouTuber within the allocated budget, and working with the vlogger to create a video that maintained their style while weaving in Give as you Live in a way that would resonate with their viewers.

Following the structure of her classic videos, Amy Valentine produced a haul video about products she purchased through Give as you Live. Viewed more than 5,600 times in one week, Amy’s video helped Give as you Live reach self proclaimed shop-a-holics, drove traffic and sign-ups on its website, and increased its social profile thanks to Amy’s mentions.

We are very pleased to announce that Firefly has been shortlisted by The Digitals Awards in the ‘Charity and Not for Profit Category’ for our work with Give as you Live on The Give as you Live Christmas Campaign.

Give As You Live logo

Celebrating excellence in digital marketing and ecommerce, the Digitals are widely regarded as the awards to win in the digital sector. With heavyweight backing from Econsultancy and new media age – and with a prestigious awards bash in Mayfair on June 27th – being shortlisted for The Digitals is a real coup!

For those of you who are not familiar with Give as you Live – where have you been? – a brief reminder:

Give as you Live enables shoppers to raise funds for their chosen charity when making an online purchase through any of the 2,300 affiliated retailers – at no extra cost – making it an absolute no brainer for charities and consumers alike. This revolution in online shopping and charitable giving has a strong social media presence, an excellent customer retention rate and, most importantly, the potential to raise £3.21 bn for charities in 2013.

The Charity & Not for Profit category  promises to be a stiffly fought competition, with Give as you Live facing the likes of Save Our NHS, Wateraid’s ‘The Big Dig’ and the Department of Health’s ‘The Awkward Conversations Project’.

Meanwhile, in terms of PR, Firefly is going toe-to-toe with agencies including Responsys, The Good Agency and Wunderman London.

As both Firefly and Give as you Live continue to go from strength to strength, we will of course report back on our successes – long may they continue.


This post was written by Charlotte.

We are thrilled to announce that following an entry that the Firefly team put together, online shopping tool Give as you Live has won the highly contested ‘Best Giving Platform’ at the Institute of Fundraising’s Partners in Fundraising Awards last week.

Give as you Live was shortlisted from a range of online giving platforms, then put to an Institute of Fundraising members vote. Give as you Live managed to fight off tough competition from the likes of Virgin Money Giving, JustTextGiving by Vodafone and Blackbaud, to win the award.

The win marks a fantastic year for Give as you Live, which has helped to raise over £3.1 million for UK charities – through some clever technology which redirects affiliate marketing spend to UK charities and causes.

The award win is one of two recent big events for CEO and Founder of Everyclick (the company behind Give as you Live) Polly Gowers, who next week is set to collect her OBE from the Queen in recognition of her services to philanthropy.

Polly said:

“I’m thrilled. It’s great that the IOF members have voted us Best Giving Platform. It’s a real validation of the technology we have developed and the great team that supports our product. There are huge opportunities to deliver significant new recurring revenue through online shopping – we look forward to working with the sector to turn it into a major new revenue stream.”

Congratulations all!

More information on Give as you Live can be found on the case study section of our website.


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There is no such thing as a fully online or offline world anymore. We’ve been used to broadcasting our offline life on our online platforms – classic examples including tweeting about public transport frustrations or adding a picture on Facebook of the amazing meal you’re having (I did say ‘classic’ examples, not necessarily the best). Now, clever ways of using technology is fast closing that gap, meaning our online life is increasingly appearing offline. Some of you might be saying ‘what is she on about?’, so, here are some examples:

Trend Watching recently wrote about how C&A in Brazil has included the number of Facebook ‘likes’ onto the clothes hangers. The brand’s Facebook store has its hangers update in real-time showing shoppers the popularity of the items on sale.

Another great example, and closer to home, was the London Eye Olympic Twitter positivity lightshow. Everyone was encouraged to tweet about the Olympics and depending on the sentiment at the time, the colours would change.

Third example, which was happening last week in fact, is Kellogg’s Tweet Shop. To promote its Special K Cracker Crisps, Kellogg’s opened a pop-up shop inviting customers to pay for the snacks with a tweet.

For these initiatives to work, of course, you need that great idea but, importantly, you need a thriving online presence to support whatever you’re doing offline. Had C&A not had a passionate online community, Real World Liking would not have been born!

For years now, we have been running PR programmes based on increasing and managing a brand’s online presence. For our client Give as you Live we have run several ‘Twitter parties’ to broaden out its Twitter following. Our newest recruit, Phil Szomszor, was telling me that PR’s are getting into the content creation and seeding game, citing the example of one of his agency’s former clients Virgin Money’s bank launch, where a high budget 3D building projection celebrating its new bank status was promoted by engaging with bloggers, filmed and seeded to achieve over 450,000 views.

Especially now the online world is going offline, digital campaigns should been deemed as important as the more ‘traditional’ PR campaign. As we say at Firefly, ‘we offer the perfect blend of online and offline PR’ – I say, get ready for some onffline PR.


This post was written by Charlotte.

Firefly is delighted to announce that Polly Gowers, CEO and founder of Everyclick, the company behind Firefly client, Give as you Live, has been appointed an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for her services to philanthropy in the UK.

Since founding Everyclick in 2005, Polly has spearheaded the business to help raise a phenomenal £2.6 million for UK charities. A huge congratulations to Polly and her team on this incredibly well-deserved honour.

To read about some of the amazing work we have been doing with Give as you Live, click here.

We’re delighted to have been nominated for a Holmes Report’s EMEA SABRE Award, for our Give as you Live “All I Want for Christmas” Campaign.

The SABREs are often thought of as “Oscars” of the PR industry – and with these gorgeous golden trophies, you can see why:

Our Give as you Live “All I Want for Christmas” campaign, which we talked about in a blog post back in November 2011, also made the PR Moment Golden Hedgehog south shortlist ; making this our second award nomination of 2012, for this PR campaign.

We have been nominated in the EMEA SABRE’s “Web based Business” category.  In the nominations, we sit alongside web based brands Netmums and Totaljobs amongst others; and alongside PR agencies including Brands2Life and The Red Consultancy.

It’s great news for us – and the PR industry – that, in shortlisting us, the judges recognise the impact that well-executed PR and social media-led campaigns can have on hard web-based business results.

Our “All I Want for Christmas” campaign, saw Give as you Live’s shopper numbers increase by over 65% in the important build-up to Christmas.  That’s a lot more Give as you Live shoppers; all raising funds for the charity of their choice at no extra cost, and spreading the word with their friends and networks.

Utilising social media networks to spread words and raise funds, has now become an important success model for our client, Give as you Live.  The “All I Want for Christmas” campaign inspired a new campaign called Mums for Good, which Firefly worked with Give as you Live and its marketing agency, to bring to life.

This brand new, PR-led campaign aims to work with the large and influential BritMums community, to create 10,000 new shoppers for Give as you Live, all incorporating this new fundraising tool into their daily shopping habits, to reveal the hidden millions available to UK charities.

We’re excited about attending the 2012 SABRE Awards EMEA ceremony, at the end of May in Brussels – we shall report back!

We are delighted to start 2012 with the news that Firefly has been shortlisted in the The Golden Hedgehog PR Awards for the work we’ve done for client, Give as you Live.

PR agencies like award nominations and wins for the same reasons that many of our clients do.  They offer us (in no particular order):

Our Give as you Live Christmas campaign, which we talked about in a blog post back in November, has made the Golden Hedgehog shortlist.  We’re honoured to be on the list with the likes of 1000heads for Nokia, Frank for Beatbullying and Splendid for Smirnoff; and we’re looking forward to hearing the judges’ verdicts in March.

But the shortlist itself, threw up some interesting observations amongst the Firefly team.

Firstly, that the shortlist for the ‘Social Media Campaign of the Year’ consisted of the maximum eight campaigns.  This tells us that, according to the Golden Hedgehog shortlist, suddenly ‘Social Media Campaign of the Year’ awards are amongst the most hotly contended out there.  That’s more shortlisted campaigns than in ‘Integrated Comms Campaign of the Year’ (a huge favourite of the early-to-mid 2000s, in response to our clients’ “360-degree campaign briefs”) and ‘Best Use of Research’.  This is a landscape that even a year or two ago, would have been entirely different; these are truly exciting times for social media evangelists.

Secondly, we noticed that amongst the shortlisted entries three are squarely in the tech/consumer tech space, two are cause-related marketing, and all, including our own, seem to have been communicating to a consumer audience.

Why is it that, when it comes to social media, B2C campaigns are so ahead of the curve?  Friend of Firefly Peter Thomson has some interesting points to make in his blog around why B2B businesses aren’t taking enough responsibility for their social media.

Interestingly, the myths that his post goes out to bust, are very similar to many of the myths that we have found ourselves tackling over the years with our B2C clients, too. Take for example, “social media isn’t about selling”.  It can be, used correctly.  Or, “social media doesn’t have a clear ROI”.  It does – and it is our job to communicate it.  “Social media can replace offline marketing.” Show us the brief – but we suspect it’s better used in combination.

We’re excited about our award nomination, as it helps us to tell the story of how we can help brands and businesses to use social media more effectively. And we suspect that the landscape will continue to change: next year, how about some B2B businesses fighting for those award nominations?

I love my job. I get to meet interesting and inspiring people but most importantly I learn so much from the clients we work with. Here’s a great example. I was introduced to Give As You Live™ by a good friend and ex Firefly client “Here’s a company you’d like Claire.” My friend knows that I’m passionate about charitable giving (he often sponsors me), plus online living and shopping and new interesting business models. I delved further. As it happened Give as You Live™ has since become a client, but this blog post is more personal. This is how Give as you Live™ has worked for me personally, and I would urge all Firefly friends to Give as you Live™.

I do much of my shopping online after 9.30pm – as do many Mums. I book holidays online, house and car insurance online, and of course just recently I racked up many purchases of Christmas presents.

I downloaded the Give as you Live™ application apprehensively. Will this slow down my pc? (No, it didn’t). Will this muck up all my searches? (No, it doesn’t). Will this be really distracting and annoying? (No, it really isn’t).

I chose my charity and began shopping. My first purchase was wine from Wine Hound. All went to plan, the wine arrived at home and I’d clocked up my first purchase. I then bought a new printer from John Lewis and a couple of Christmas presents from Firebox and Send It. It was so satisfying to see that for relatively no extra effort, and from great retailers, I had raised £10 for Beating Bowel Cancer in just 4 fairly minor purchases. The instant gratification is addictive.

My New Year’s resolution is to continue to Give as you Live™ all year round – I reckon given my existing online spending habits I can easily raise £100 in 2011 for Beating Bowel Cancer. The next big purchase coming up is a replacement washing machine and then a holiday.

Three points to make:

1. Buying through Give as you Live™ shouldn’t cost you any more than you would spend online anyway – and it doesn’t

2. The retailers have to be registered and that list is very large already and growing daily. I have pretty much always found what I need. I couldn’t find a tortoise though.

3. At the moment the app only works on Internet Explorer and Firefox, which is what has caused the most hassle, but other internet browsers are on their way imminently.

Please try it. You have nothing to lose and much to give – for no extra cost other than the couple of minutes it takes to download an app.

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