At Rocket Charities, we’re fortunate enough to partner with a lot of incredible charities that are doing great work for a variety of causes. To help show our support, we’re shining a spotlight on charities across the UK. We think it’s just one way that we can give back to our community and share inspiration and ideas for better fundraising.
This month, we contacted Miriam Francos, Communications Officer for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice to discover how she successfully incorporates merchandise into her communications efforts. Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice offers care and support to children and young adults with life-shortening and life-threatening conditions, both in their homes and at the charity’s hospice in North Anston. As Bluebell Wood’s Communications Officer, Miriam is responsible for designing artwork for both digital and print for a wide variety of audiences, including Bluebell Wood families, volunteers, current supporters, and customers across the hospice’s nine shops. Below, she shares some insights into her role, and how she approaches merchandising for the best outcome.
What’s a typical day in the office for you?
Generally, I’ll be working on designing a specific piece of artwork such as a flyer, newsletter, etc. This will involve researching other similar documents, designing the artwork in Adobe Illustrator/InDesign, writing copy, overseeing relevant photography, getting artwork amended and signed off, and looking for quotes/signing off proofs.
What’s does it mean to be successful in your role?
For me, it’s about working to the brief that I’m set by the person who has requested artwork (usually the head of another department) and completing artwork on time and to (or under) budget. I want to make sure that whatever I design promotes the work we do with families and helps spread our vision, while helping us raise the funds we need to keep going.
What role does charity merchandising play in helping you spread Bluebell Wood’s vision?
Merchandising plays a huge role in making sure our brand is known. For us, badges and t-shirts are among our most successful merchandising products.
What are the most important things to consider when purchasing charity merchandise?
Cost, quality of products, and having a good relationship with the company. Being a charity, we often have a limited budget, so working with a company that we know will do its best to make sure that we get the best product for our money is really important. Timing is also usually key, as departments want their printed items as soon as possible.
How do you typically decide the best type of merchandise to use?
When deciding which merchandise to purchase, I consider if it’s going to help get the message and brand out, and if it’s worth the cost and time. I also consider if there’s cheaper alternatives.
To learn more about Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice or to donate, please visit www.bluebellwood.org. If you’re interested in merchandising, feel free to get in touch, and we’d be happy to walk you through your options.