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In times of emergency, every second counts. Being able to be the first to communicate with your donors will be advantageous. At Redstone Marketing, we advise the charities we work with to create a customisable crisis appeal kit that they can have handy when disaster strikes.


What is a crisis appeal kit and why do we need one?

A crisis appeal kit is basically everything you need to execute a campaign but altered to suit the intricacies of rolling it out during an emergency.

It includes timelines, templates, agreements and basically the overall plan for how your organisation will respond to a crisis.

A crisis appeal can be particularly helpful for:

  • Being the first in the industry to communicate to your donor and give them your option on how to respond.
  • Coordinating your team effectively and ensuring everyone knows their role when working under pressure.
  • Ensuring all stakeholders within the organisation and suppliers outside the organisation are happy and prepared for executing the campaign.


What should we include in our crisis appeal kit?

Having worked with a range of not-for-profits and helping to design their campaigns, we advise including the following in your kit:
  1. A condensed timeline (24-48 hours) with timeframes for completing each phase of strategy, copy, design, printing, stakeholder sign off, testing samples and lodgment.
  2. An agreed reduced review group list – this may be one representative from each key area of your organisation or even just a high-level stakeholder who can sign-off various stages of the campaign without delay.
  3. A templated design for the letter, lift piece and outer envelope. Also, some graphic design options that you can drop copy into.
  4. External supplier agreement – to avoid creating an appeal that only gets held up at the printer or mailhouse, we recommend having an agreement and plan in place with your preferred suppliers on how they will tailor their service during a crisis (be sure to clarify what counts as a crisis and how you will communicate when this tailored service needs to kick-in).
  5. A reporting template on the metrics that will be reviewed to measure campaign success.


What can’t go into the crisis appeal kit?

Although it can be tempting, we advise not having a stand-by hero story for your appeal kit. In every emergency, you want to ensure that your communication is authentic, sensitive and very specific.

Instead, we recommend, that sourcing an accurate story that reflects the current situation is an area not to be rushed, but carefully considered.

Ensure that what you communicate is tasteful, sensitive and very clear on how the donors support will make a direct impact for someone during the crisis.

Was this helpful? Do you need support with creating your crisis appeal kit? You can book a discovery session with us to learn more.