Blog

Latest News and Updates

October 2020 – First Wednesday Newsletter

the online book company platform

A fortuitous and most timely way to engage and raise funds

For the last decade or so, The Online Book Company has been creating interactive online books which worldwide organisations, large and small, have been using for supporter retention, engagement and fundraising.

Since March 2020 the volume of traffic to our books has seen an exponential increase. Tens of thousands of people have contributed to them, creating increased engagement for the organisations concerned.

The link below takes you to a two-and-a-half-minute video which gives a quick and clear insight into what The Online Book Company does, and how it has benefited different organisations.

the online book company platform

Watch video

Over the last 18 months, we have been developing a new platform. The timing of it is fortuitous and we have created an exciting ultra low cost breakthrough for supporter engagement and most importantly, fundraising. This new platform will enable individuals to go online and create their own books. As with our traditional global Online Books, individuals can share their self-created books with family, friends and colleagues.

Each charity will be given the opportunity to have their own landing page. This page will contain fully branded and templated books of the charity’s own choice and design, which their supporters will be able to buy and create. There is no limit to the type of book that can be created. Examples are legion, but storytelling, fund raising, supporter stories, cataloguing historical events, weddings, remembrance, ‘Thank-yous’ and memorials are just a few examples.

There are three ways the charity can make money:

  • Firstly, the supporter pays £15 (inc. VAT) for the online book and then the charity gets £5 by way of a donation.
  • Secondly, the books can be set up with donation links taking contributors and readers directly to your fundraising pages.
  • And finally, as and when the supporter wishes, they can arrange to have the book printed. This also gives rise to an additional revenue sharing opportunity.

As far as costs are concerned, there is a one-off set up cost of £500 + VAT, which is being waived for our current clients. For that you get a bespoke service from our wonderful team in Cornwall. In the month following books being purchased, the revenue stream back to your organisation starts flowing.

We thought it important that you should know about it, even if this project doesn’t come under your direct remit. We would appreciate if you could kindly forward it to the relevant individual(s) in your organisation for their consideration.

We would love to show you more and can happily set up a screen sharing call at a time to suit. Just click here to drop us an E mail with your best contact number and we will be in touch to arrange a suitable time.
Storm Alex brings joy to the Kite Surfers in St. Ives Bay

Storm Alex brings joy to the Kite Surfers in St. Ives Bay

read more
Julie PentecostOctober 2020 – First Wednesday Newsletter

September 2020 – First Wednesday Newsletter

Tributes to Tony Morris of ITV News

In early August, we were contacted by ITV/Granada with the sad news that Tony Morris, a much admired Manchester Based presenter, had very sadly died. With a dedicated team put on to the case, we were able to create this personalised Online Book, after the announcement on the evening news we received literally thousands of tributes from all over the UK.

No one has to be a celebrity to have the own book created. During recent months, many similar books have been created for those who have lost loved ones. Through the median of an Online Book, friends, colleagues and relations from all over the world have been able to leave messages of remembrance and/or condolence and in so doing bring comfort to family and those left behind.

Each of these books can have a fundraising link and could incorporate your logo too. They start from as little as £35 and depending on the complexity, can typically be turned around within 24/48 hrs.

It will soon be Last calls for Light Up A Life
With many Light up a Life/Lights of Love services going Virtual, work has started on producing Light up a Life books for Hospices. This is where people can donate money online and leave a dedication for their Loved one, which then appears in the Online Book. If you would like to find out more and set up a screenshare, then please click on this enquiry link and we will call you back.

Godrevy Lighthouse on a beautiful Bank Holiday Monday

Godrevy Lighthouse on a beautiful Bank Holiday Monday

read more
Julie PentecostSeptember 2020 – First Wednesday Newsletter

We have moved!

Due to lockdown, we’ve spent the past few months working from home. So, we decided to take advantage of a break clause in our lease and chose to move out of the office on a trial basis!

All of this has taken a bit of planning and adjusting. What do we do with all our company “stuff” that accumulated over years? What happens to our beloved coffee machine, the photocopier, the shredder, the office Xmas decorations, the company memorabilia and all that sort of stuff?

office in a box

In what has been an extremely useful exercise, we’ve had a thorough sort out and moved our office into a container. As you can see from the picture, some strategic planning has been applied to the storage so that we can get easy access to the filing cabinets as and when we need it!

This is all made much easier by the fact that none of us have the challenge of having children who are dependent on home education.

We are a close team and have regular calls in the day. We enjoy spending time in each other’s company. We’re hoping that, with the continuing decline in new covid numbers, that we’ll be able to meet every couple of weeks for a working lunch so that we can have that all important social catch up!

Incidentally, all our contact details remain the same
Phone +44 (0) 1872 226800
hello@theonlinebookcompany.com

read more
Julie PentecostWe have moved!

We all like to remember

But more than that – we want to remember, thank and honour those wonderful people who have done something special for us and indeed to remember those who are no longer with us.

Our remembrance books are a unique way to honour and recognise your supporters, legators or quite simply to say thank you.

We’ve recently created a short video which shows just some of the Individual books we have built during the Lockdown. These books can easily be made available to your supporters at no cost to you with an optional fundraising link that will ensure you receive donations.

There’s so much more we would like to share with you, including news of our new platform! On this platform, individuals and organisations can use their own creative flair to make online books complete with their own logo and branding.

If you would like any more information about our books, please do not hesitate to contact us at hello@theonlinebookcompany.com

read more
Julie PentecostWe all like to remember

Necessity is Mother of Innovation

We would love to show what we have been doing for different organisations.

We can easily set up a screen sharing call and show you some of what we have been up to.

To set this up, start by dropping an Email to jonathan@theonlinebookcompany.com or calling us on 01872 226800.

Lockdown has completely changed the way we go about our daily lives. We’ve needed to be imaginative, to adapt. In addition to a few things we’ve picked up in the press this month we wanted to look at a few ways that clients and businesses have been getting creative to adapt to our new world.

We’ve also given a little insight into some of the smart thinking adopted by our clients that has helped them to adapt to some of the challenges that we have all faced:

It Wasn’t all bad.

A woman from Essex missed her 76-year-old father so much during lockdown, she enrolled as a volunteer at his care home so she could see him. Until March, Nina Ambrose visited her father, who has Alzheimer’s, several times a week.

When lockdown made that impossible and she was furloughed from her job at a cosmetics company, the former Butlins redcoat sat eight exams in order to join the activities team at the major Lodge home in Chelmsford.

She works with other residents, but her main joy is having the opportunity to see her father at the end of each session. “I feel so, so lucky to be able to spend time with him” she said. (Credit to The Week)

The Hug Tunnel

Out of everyone dealing with the pandemic, elderly people have been finding these times especially difficult. Those living alone have been unable to see their children and grandchildren for months upon end.

However, a care home in Brazil has thought of a creative solution to help reunite families and cheer up their residents.

A hug tunnel has been installed at a care home in Brazil to enable elderly residents to cuddle their loved one safely. Staff at a  care home in Rio Grande do Sol had noticed that the pandemic was getting its residence down. The tunnel – a plastic sheet with sealed armholes – can be used by appointment only and is cleaned after use. The home’s administrator, Rubia Santos said “We noticed that our senior residents were feeling sad. We thought they would be much happier if we found a way for them to hug their relatives.”

This clever invention has allowed husbands, wives, children and grandchildren to stay close to their loved ones in the most heat warming way without putting them at risk.

read more
Julie PentecostNecessity is Mother of Innovation

1.9 Million Strawberries Come to a Sticky End

When life gives you strawberries… Make strawberry jam!

Wimbledon bosses earlier announced that they were cancelling the championships for the first time since the second world war. Of course, Wimbledon wouldn’t be Wimbledon without endless portions of strawberries served with cream. So, to avoid all that fruit going to waste, bosses came up with a solution…

Each year fans consume around 1.9 million strawberries at Wimbledon, but with this year’s tournament no longer going ahead, 750kg of those strawberries are going to be made into a special preserve to mark the tournament this year. The remainder of those strawberries are being donated to foodbanks and schools, so nothing goes to waste.

Perhaps not the way fans were expecting to enjoy the games this year, but perfect for a lovely cream tea in the garden.

Wimbledon haven’t been the only people making big changes…

“All things Virtual is where the future is…if We can’t operate in the Digital economy, we may not be able to Operate in any economy.”  BBC Radio 4 Sat 27 June

“Lockdown may leave a lasting digital legacy. Coronavirus has radically changed the way we live, work and communicate online.” Ofcom’s Director of strategy and research Yih-Choung Teh

As a company that has been building digital products for supporter engagement for more than a decade, we were amazed that as the lockdown started to hit, an increasing number of charities together with national and international companies approached us all of whom had one thing in common. That was to have an effective means of communication for the retention, engagement, acknowledgement, and appreciation of fundraising. We are so pleased to have been able to help.

Necessity really has been the mother of Innovation! The books we have created have received tens of thousands of messages all of which have helped charities keep their audiences engaged and reminded of the valuable support they provide, especially in days such as these. Fundraising, engaging support and giving us the opportunity to give thanks for their incredible work.

These books covered everything from Legacy Recognition, In Memoriam books and Light up a Life books which can be adapted for other campaigns.

We would love to show you some of the work have been doing for  NHS Trusts, new Initiatives for Hospices, how Legacy recognition has demonstrably worked and much more.

To find out more, we would love to set up a screen sharing call and show you some of the opportunities we have already created.

There is no obligation and it would be lovely to hear your feedback too.

To set this up, please drop me an E mail, we can set up a call.

I very much look forward to hearing from you..

read more
Julie Pentecost1.9 Million Strawberries Come to a Sticky End

From the dining room to the collection tin

Take a moment to think about life has changed over the past months.

The new office that used to be the dining room. The extra time spent with those closest to us. Home schooling, Zoom calls and Microsoft Teams – everyone’s been learning.

If there’s one thing we can say for certain today it’s that the digital revolution has only accelerated in the wake of Covid-19. The charity sector has embraced this by creating new, digital solutions to fundraising and continuing their crucial and essential work online.

We are really proud to be working with so many charities and we have developed a means of furthering this work in our new digital world. Since developing our exciting new platform that allows everyone to easily create online books, we wanted to offer you the opportunity to use our platform to help with fundraising. Your supporters will soon be able to create their own interactive online books from your charity. This costs your organisation literally nothing and allows you to gain a £5 donation for each new book created by your supporters.

Using our new platform from home over lockdown has given it the best possible testing we could have hoped for. It works by providing your customer with templates from which they can then customise and build their own book or collaborate with others in the creative process. These books exist online, so they can share these books with as many of their friends and family as they like. We believe this is a brilliant new way to allow charities to stay connected with their supporters on a low cost/no cost basis and safely share moments together in the digital world.

If you have further questions or would like to find out more please email jonathan@theonlinebookcompany.com who will be happy to discuss this further with you and arrange a virtual meeting and presentation.

We hope to be welcoming you very soon.

Or, Make an online enquiry

read more
Tim CFrom the dining room to the collection tin

Saying farewell when there is nobody about?

saying farewell with an online leaving book examples

We all know the feeling at work when something big happens. Whether that be an important birthday, your favourite colleague leaving on maternity, or someone leaving for an exciting new job. The most important thing is to remind them of the wonderful time you spent together and to let them know how much they will be missed.

We also know the awkward shuffling of a leaving card under the desk and trying to squeeze your message into the corner of the page because someone else decided to take up half the page.

Say farewell with an online leaving or retirement book

During the lockdown we have not been able to be there for these moments in person, but they can still be celebrated.
Drawing on our decade of experience, we create individual online leaving books that mean sharing these moments is still possible. Indeed, such has been the popularity of the books that they are available to a national and international audience, far more than previously and are proving to be a lovely and long remembered gift.

These interactive online books allow everyone wherever they are, to contribute to a personalised book celebrating the recipient. You and your colleagues can add videos wishing them the best of luck, add photos of special moments and write about our favourite memories. Unlike a traditional card, the writing space in these books is unlimited, so you can wish your friend all the best, and still have room to share special memories. They cost as little as £25 and can be adapted for any purpose, whether that be to write your own story, or to give as a gift.

This is your opportunity to create something truly bespoke, personal and, most importantly, to still be present for the exciting celebrations happening in the lives of those we value.

Make your messages even more personal, create then link a Youtube Video to your message, wishing them the best of luck.

Follow this link for more information, or make an enquiry.

read more
Tim CSaying farewell when there is nobody about?

Wooden spoons at the ready for the Virtual Bake Off!

With the UK renowned for being a nation of bakers and most of us currently stuck at home, we are delighted to announce our first Virtual Bake Off challenge!

We’ve launched the challenge to provide us all with a bit of light-hearted fun in the run up to Easter, and to support the NET Coronavirus Appeal, which raised an amazing £11 million in just its first week to help those affected by the crisis.

As such, we’re encouraging absolutely everyone to take part: genius bakers or novices, individuals or families, and to bake anything you like – from brownies and cookies to cakes and scones. All you have to do is share your creations in photo or video form, whether they’re stunning successes or dismal disasters, in our special Virtual Bake Off online book.

As well as providing a lovely opportunity to connect with others virtually, as well as a great way to engage the family during lockdown, there will of course be prizes – and not just for the best baking. We’ll also have some celebrities both joining in and also judging the creations.

And, while entry is free, because we’re supporting NET we’re asking anyone who is able to give, to follow the link in the book, and donate to its appeal.

Of course, the more people we can get to join in, the more fun it will be, and the more money we can get to NET, so we’re also encouraging people to spread the word. Perhaps you could challenge your colleagues as well as your friends and family, or share the opportunity with your charity’s supporters!

Follow this link for more information, and to submit your entries.

read more
Julie PentecostWooden spoons at the ready for the Virtual Bake Off!

RNIB – Proudly acknowledging the generosity of our supporters

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) is one of the UK’s leading sight loss charities and the largest community of blind and partially sighted people. RNIB recognises everyone’s unique experience of sight loss and offers help and support – this can be anything from practical and emotional support to campaigning for change, our reading services, and the products we offer in our online shop.

We want to ensure blind and partially sighted people are kept informed and can access the support they need.

Every day, 250 people begin to lose their sight and currently we can only reach one in three of the people who need our help the most. The organisation has a crucial role to play in creating a world where there are no barriers to people with sight loss. We want people to see differently about sight loss.

Legacy gifts are so important to RNIB and every gift we receive makes a huge difference. All of our services rely on voluntary income and a third are only possible thanks to supporters remembering RNIB in their Will.

We recognise and celebrate the generosity of those who have left legacies to RNIB through our Book of Remembrance. This is our way of saying thank you, for giving people the freedom to live their lives to the full. Every single person in our Book of Remembrance leaves a legacy that will make a significant and ongoing difference to people with sight loss, for years to come.

RNIB book of legators

Legacies help to create a world that concentrates on what people with sight loss can do, not what they can’t.

read more
Julie PentecostRNIB – Proudly acknowledging the generosity of our supporters