Welcome to our new website!
Vibrant, informative, easy to navigate and the perfect gateway for people looking to access our services.
One of the biggest things any charity can do is launch a new website, but we decided to go a stage further and also comprehensively refresh the brand that has defined the charity for our entire 40-year history. Why did we do it?
A bit of background…
When we were founded back in 1983, as a way of providing non-clinical support for people with a cancer diagnosis, the name encapsulated everything the charity was about. The logo was developed at the same time and, barring a few tweaks to straplines, fonts and colour tones, the “blue oval” has been emblazoned on everything relating to CancerCare – from t-shirts to letterheads - for decades.
Then, last year, Covid struck the world…
As was the case for many organisations, the pandemic instigated a comprehensive rethink of everything we do we ranging from service delivery to fundraising. The unprecedented situation meant that we simply weren’t able to do the things we do in the same way. Face-to-face sessions were impossible, so we moved them online or via the telephone. Mass-participation fundraising events were cancelled so we went “virtual” to ensure we kept the money we needed to support our clients, coming in.
As the world went virtual, pretty much overnight, it became clear that we needed to overhaul our own digital capacity to ensure we could keep pace with society’s rapid shift to online platforms.
What did we decide to do?
As a result, last autumn, we decided we needed a new website that could keep pace with emerging technologies and tap into people’s thirst for online interaction, whether in terms of engagement with our services or raising money for us.
Also, while we are rightly proud of our history - which over 40 years has seen us provide vital support to tens of thousands of people across the Morecambe Bay area - we felt the time was right to give our image a makeover, too.
We consulted our clients, staff and stakeholders and it was felt that the current logo was overdue a revamp with many viewing it as outdated, somewhat “cold” and uninspiring - particularly younger people.
So… what to do next?!
We commissioned award-winning Lancaster-based agency Factored to develop a new website, fit for the modern digital age, and breathe new life into our branding to give it a vibrant look and feel.
The new website has a bold new aesthetic. We employed the services of professional photographer Adrian Ray to take portrait shots of a number of clients, staff, volunteers, therapists and members of our young people’s peer support group. These impactful photos are used throughout the site to express the warmth of what we do and personality of the people who come here.
We also put our people at the heart of the design of our new branding by using an innovative emotion mark-making process, asking them to create their own artwork, using brush strokes, colours and shapes, to express what CancerCare means to them. Factored then incorporated these colourful creations into the design of the new website. They will also be used in new promotional materials, posters, service leaflets, building signage and more.
The language we use…
The way we “talk” to people and the language we use will also be very much different. Our current tone of voice could probably be described - perhaps understandably given the nature of what we do - as functional and clinical, mainly emphasising our services and promoting our fundraising events.
We will now endeavour to engage our audience, whether clients or donor, with a much more empowering use of language. This new tone of voice will focus on how CancerCare makes people “feel” whether that is the positive outcomes of a therapy session or the buzz to be gained from donating some money to us.
This upbeat new way of communicating will also help us making what we do more attractive to younger people, which is becoming increasingly important to us.
Boosting our fundraising…
Factored have also used their technological know-how to ensure the website will maximise our fundraising capacity. This is especially important given that pandemic restrictions and a straitened economy have resulted in greater competition for charitable donations.
People expect to be able to donate online, quickly and easily, as a matter of course. This will be at the heart of the new website which will allow people to donate what they want, how they want and demonstrate to them the huge impact of their generous contribution.
This technology will also allow us to identify and talk to our donors in a much more effective way and keep them engaged with us in the future.
When we embarked on this exciting project, we had no idea where it would eventually take us, and we were determined to explore any ideas, no matter how radical and outlandish. This included potentially changing our name! Many hours were spent kicking ideas around and mulling over options ranging from Onward! to WeCan! before reaching the conclusion that the history and connotations and public awareness of our current name were simply too valuable to leave behind.