Celebrating their 40th Anniversary, BBC Children in Need (CiN) raised over a staggering £37m during their lockdown November appeal. A magnificent result especially during challenging times throughout our nation and worldwide. They are a brand that resonates, attracting support across the generations including those they’ve helped. Supporters include disadvantaged children, school children, families, corporates and celebrities from around the world, all rallying together to help children in need. What is the common thread? Their brand values.
Their brand story communicates everything they stand for. These values are core to how they live their brand. They are effectively reflected through every detail.
Winning hearts and minds throughout the decades
The BBC’s first broadcast appeal was a five minute radio broadcast in 1927 and supported four children’s charities. In 1980, the first BBC Children in Need telethon was broadcast! Today Children in Need is a recognised household name, supporting 3,900 local charities and projects which directly help children and young people in the UK.
Whilst they support many charities and projects CiN represent one united voice, one identity, one mission. It rallies people to improve the lives of children. It enables people to uniquely come together, (whether at home, work or school) making it a celebratory event in itself especially with their annual appeal – always a highlight of the year!
Brand values seen and heard
‘Making a positive impact on a child’s life’ is at the heart of all CiN say and do. This can be seen in their branding and cheerful brand mascot Pudsey bear, through to the way they work, support and celebrate those life changing moments. Enabling charities to be there alongside families when the need it the most.
They work collaboratively; with the public, inspiring community initiatives and engaging families in fun challenges; as well as commercial activities and partnerships. This approach optimises the amount of funding raised, reach and impact for the individual charities and projects they support.
The CiN brand resonates and motivates people through shared values and aspirations.
Their brand values filter through to identify the right partnerships, collaborations and the projects they support.
Brand story powerfully communicated through everything
The challenges, disadvantages, impact and outcomes children and young people are going through are brought to life by the stories shared by families and the young people themselves. This not only helps to raise awareness of the issues but also celebrates the results and achievements, giving hope to others facing similar circumstances and inspiring people and communities as to the difference they can make.
During the years the BBC CiN branding has evolved with the charity – Pudsey bear made his first appearance in 1985, originally created and named by artist Joanna Lane, who saw potential for a personality and mascot beyond the 2D logo. Describing the creative process during a BBC radio interview for Pudsey’s 30th anniversary, Joanna wonderfully states ‘it comes from the heart not the head’. It’s a process that draws from personal experiences and connections to create something incredibly special that has captured a unique place in hearts across the UK and beyond. Many of whom have grown up with Pudsey (and are also celebrating their 40th birthday’s this year!)
A brand that resonates
Pudsey has gone through different iterations and collectable limited editions, bringing him up-to-date and in a style and format that works across media in print, digital and merchandise.
The teddy bear is a symbol that every child and adult can relate to. Pudsey’s spotted handkerchief style bandage represents injury / disadvantage. He’s not afraid to show vulnerability, which whole heartedly communicates the need and desired response for empathy and care. He always brings a smile.
Pudsey is a welcome sign of help and he encourages us help to make a difference in any way we can.
The brand experience of CiN connects and resonates on a very human level, addressing basic human needs. A right to safety. A right to childhood. A right to be valued and loved. Making a positive impact on a child’s life. CiN brand campaigns and appeals empower people, regardless of age or ability, to participate in any way they can and however they want to. It brings people together as a part of something bigger. It celebrates, supports and provides hope.
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Image Yeshi Kangrang | Unsplash