Case Studies

The Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA)

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The Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA) is the conservation education charity which runs Banham Zoo in Norfolk and Africa Alive in Suffolk. It inspires communities to connect with nature and educate on the importance of protecting the future of our planet.

The Challenge

The impact of the first national lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic was devastating for the charity. By the time PLMR Genesis was appointed in May 2020, ZSEA had lost more than £1.5 million of income. To ensure the survival of the much-loved zoos and a sustainable future for ZSEA, the charity underwent a major restructure and redundancy programme. To survive the closure period and rebuild, the charity needed income quickly, so a fundraising campaign was launched seeking the support of local communities.

The Solution

Clear messaging was developed to position the financial crisis and the changes which needed to be made, whilst protecting and managing the charity’s brand reputation during the major restructure. The PLMR Genesis team acted quickly and responsively to ensure a) accurate/timely information was given on business changes, b) vital funds were raised and c) the government were lobbied for life-line support.

The Outcome

The ‘Wild About Survival’ appeal was created to engage the community’s help. Eye-catching creatives, which featured an endangered Amur Tiger, were used in a targeted Facebook campaign to encourage the public to donate. PLMR Genesis also created a wellbeing campaign to bring to life ZSEA’s strategic aim of connecting people with nature for wellbeing. The campaign premise was that a zoo visit, or activity such as volunteering or fundraising for ZSEA, boosted physical and mental wellbeing. As a result of these campaigns, more than £63,000 was raised for the charity, social media channels received 12,602 new followers in 12 months and we secured more than 170 pieces of media coverage including features in The Daily Mail and The Telegraph.

PLMR Genesis came on board in our hour of need. The ‘Genesis Gems’, as I love to refer to them, dedicated a huge amount of pro-bono time to us. Their kindness and talent got our charity through a tough time and we really couldn’t have done it without them. PLMR Genesis have continued to do everything in a wonderful and committed way. A year on and we now outsource our entire marketing function to them. We would totally recommend PLMR Genesis for all your digital, PR, marketing and crisis communications needs.
Claudia Roberts, Chief Operating Officer

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