I went on a tour with my graduate program to various companies in NYC. One of the companies we stopped at was AdCouncil, who are responsible for the Shelter Pet Project.
(photo courtesy of their Facebook page)
They discussed the research involved throughout every step of a campaign’s life. When measuring the success of a campaign, they’ll look at surveys, social media engagement, news, etc.
The social media engagement bit caught my attention, since one of the questions I’d personally been having with my topic was how to equate likes/shares with actual adoptions/donations. I emailed one of the presenters after coming back from NYC to ask if they had any shareable research that might help me with my own research topic, and received a response a day later saying that they’ll eventually have a Facebook case study coming out in a couple weeks.
One observation that they gave me was that Sarah McLaughlin style campaigns generate more donations, while campaigns like the Shelter Pet Project tend to generate more adoptions. I wonder if those donations are one-time, or repeat donors as that could make a difference in how a rescue would want to angle their social media efforts.
I’m personally not a fan of Sarah McLaughlin-esque campaigns, because I worry that the harshness of their commercials will desensitize of throw off supporters. However, I won’t argue with research.
It would be up to a rescue group to determine where they want to focus, on adoptions or donations. I will personally vote for adoptions, since I’m just a foster parent who doesn’t deal with operation costs of a shelter.