With recent events, like Hurricane Harvey in Texas, and Hurricane Irma putting the southern United States in her sights, all eyes are on the area of disaster relief. It goes without saying that we all notice an uptick in marketing by non-profits in times like these. This isn’t a bad thing, they survive on donations and need funds to respond appropriately to crisis. Having said that, there is one non-profit that, at least in my eyes has broke through the clutter and stood above the rest. That non-profit is Direct Relief.

The Box People

Direct Relief is known to my wife and friends as “the box people”, and that is actually a rather accurate description of them and what they do. Essentially, they send supplies in pre packed kits to areas in need. While, this in and of itself isn’t all that noteworthy since many other non-profits do the same thing, it’s how they approach it that has garnered them acclaim. In fact, Direct Relief and their slogan of “Deliver a world of good” has been named #1 of the “10 of the Best Charities Everyone’s Heard Of”(Charity Navigator, 2017).

The creative strategy

With respect to the brainstorming techniques most likely used by the creative team, their focus was most likely simple…the box. What does the box represent? What does it do? What’s the potential of the box? I could imagine members of the creative team staring at a box, walking around the office with a box, and(had it been me) thrown the box across the room a time or two. Digging deeper, hopefully the individual members of the creative team used their own personal “creative builder” to help them think outside the box(no pun intended). Ultimately, coming up with the brilliant slogan of “A better world, a box at a time(Humanitarian Medical Aid, 2017)”.

The creative strategy statement

Moving onto the creative strategy statement for Direct Relief, I imagine a good one being along the lines of “Improve the health and lives of those affected by emergencies around the world, while maintaining a focus on transparency to our donors and partners”.

Questioning the creative brief

With respect to potential questions on the creative brief, these two come to mind;


  • What differentiates us from other non-profit organizations offering similar services?
    • The one thing that Direct Relief does different is places a high level of emphasis on transparency to donors and partners. This is evidenced by the detail of all financial reporting as well as the “Where the Aid Goes(Humanitarian Medical Aid, 2017)” feature on the website.
  • What do we want the audience to think about our non-profit?
    • That we are responsive not only to those affected by disaster or poverty, but also to our valued donor and volunteer base. Without both we would not exist.



10 of the Best Charities Everyone’s Heard Of. (2017). Retrieved September 06, 2017, from https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=topten.detail&listid=18

Humanitarian Medical Aid. (2017). Retrieved September 06, 2017, from https://www.directrelief.org/


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