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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..

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Julie Pentecost1.9 Million Strawberries Come to a Sticky End

Fundraising without a budget? Here’s a new idea!

What if you could engage and delight your supporters – and raise funds – for just the price of a couple of links on your website?

fundraising without a budget

This month at The Online Book Company, we’re excited to announce a brand new product to help you do precisely that. Set to launch in mid February, it will enable you to raise funds simply by offering supporters the opportunity to create their very own Online Books that they can fill with their photos, videos, and memories and share.  As with other social media platforms like Facebook people will have the option of sharing with family and friends all over the world.

The Books are suitable for a whole range of purposes: supporters sponsoring or adopting an animal could create a book about them with their adoption certificate, pictures, video, thoughts and memories, while others could use them to record and remember special events such as birthdays, weddings, and anniversaries.

For charities, there is no risk and for those coming on board with us before the end of April 2020 requires no financial outlay.  Through our platform we will provide your own fully branded microsite for you to direct supporters to.  Once on the microsite, they will be able to choose from a selection of templated book covers, or create their own.

The books can be branded to your charity, and each one will initially cost the individual £12.50 + VAT per year: £5 of which we will return to you annually as a donation.

The Books are simple to create, easy to update and share, and can also be printed. All the supporter has to do is upload their photos, memories and experiences into our simple system, and then publish their creation online.

As the perfect way to keep memories alive, these Books will be something people can continue to add to, and revisit. For those who also wish to have a physical copy, there will be the option to print the books, using our specialist print partner.

If you’d like to learn more about how these Books could help your charity, please do give us a call on 01872 226800 to make an appointment for a non-committal screen share, and we’ll be happy to show you!

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Julie PentecostFundraising without a budget? Here’s a new idea!

Brother James Kimpton, Online Book of Remembrance

We are honoured to create the Book of Remembrance to Brother James Kimpton after a lifetime of service ‘Reaching the Unreached’ (RTU).
Brother Kimpton started working to better the opportunities of those in abject poverty in Sri Lanka in 1952.
Following the expulsion of all foreigners in 1964 he moved to India, managing a training school for destitute boys in Madurai.

Setting himself and others the highest standards of integrity and commitment working with RTU over 52 years has organised the building more than 8700 homes and 2500 wells.
Deeply spiritual he relied on his Christian faith in building a thriving organisation admired throughout the world.
Never retiring, he passed away in India in October 2017 being sorely missed by those he helped and worked with to the end.

This book is rather special in featuring messages in both English and Tamil, being the local language.
https://www.theonlinebookcompany.com/OnlineBooks/Kimpton/Contributions/RTUpeoplepastandpres/0
The online books support both typed and pasted non-latin characters ensuring inclusion of communities worldwide.
Reading the inspiring messages in the book is a fitting tribute to a very special humanitarian who cared more for others.

The Online Book of Remembrance to Brother James Kimpton


 
Contact Us – personal Online Book enquiry form.

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Tim CBrother James Kimpton, Online Book of Remembrance

Rotary International

Rotary International call for help

We were flattered to receive a telephone call from Rotary International in Tanzania asking if we could help them by creating an Online Book of Condolence to celebrate the life of Sam Owori, their incoming International President, who died before taking up his office.

We put together an Individual condolence book for Sam which has received some lovely messages from literally all over the world.

Rotary International book of Condolence to President Elect, Sam Owiri

 
Contact Us – personal Online Book enquiry form.

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Tim CRotary International

Firefighters Memorial Book

Firefighters Memorial Book

The Firefighters’ Memorial Trust Online Book is the probably one of the most comprehensive books we have produced and has the details of every known fire-fighter who has died in Service since 1754.

This includes chapters for those members of the Salvage Corps, whilst on Military Service including the Boer War, Fire Watchers and Fire Guards from the Second World War and those actively being researched.

It really is a remarkable historical tome and is the Only place in the world where all the records are held in one place and fully available for the public to gain access and look up those relatives who may have been in the Fire service.

Members of the public are invited to help by submitting details on unidentified individuals and incomplete records.

Included in the book is a chapter listing those whose anniversary falls on today, from 1754 to last year.
This Day in History

Particularly poignant are the darkest days of the World War 2 Blitz, claiming the lives of scores of Firefighters, Fire Watchers and Fire Guards serving in cities and towns around the UK.

List of names in The Firefighters Memorial Trust book

 
Contact Us – personal Online Book enquiry form.

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Tim CFirefighters Memorial Book

Making a Move for the Royal Signals Memorial Book

Flash move for the Royal Signals Memorial Book

This month has seen a technological upgrade to Royal Signals Memorial Book, we are proud to to have produced and host for the Royal Signals.

Their original book was designed using “Flash” technology which is no longer being supported …. the natural successor is HTML5 which works incredibly well across all platforms and has none of the device limitations endured by its predecessor.

The new book was launched with a flurry of social media sent out by the Royal Signals which resulted in lots of re engagement from their supporters, old and new.

Please visit the book, you may discover a relative or ancestor inside.

List of names on The Royal Signals Memorial Book
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Tim CMaking a Move for the Royal Signals Memorial Book

Saying Thank You To Your Volunteers

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”
William Arthur Ward

If, in the words of Elton John and Bernie Taupin, “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word” then those two little words, “Thank You,” should be the easiest.

We say them every day, in a whole variety of situations, often without thinking too much about them. But when the idea of saying an organisational “thank you” comes up, things can get trickier. It becomes something that isn’t said often enough or doesn’t get communicated in a fitting and appropriate manner.

Demonstrating gratitude and recognising volunteer contribution matters on a number of levels particularly as what volunteers bring – their time and something of themselves – is always unique and personal.

Volunteers – At The Heart of Making Things Happen

Volunteers are the lifeblood of many charities and charitable organisations. Working alongside and complementing the roles played by paid staff, they strengthen teams and bring their skills, experience and motivation to the cause. In the words of the chief economist of the Bank of England, Andy Haldane, “their impact on society is much larger than most people think.” Their economic value, adding some £40billion to UK GDP is the easiest to quantify and understand, but the less measurable social and personal benefits they bring must never be underestimated.

 

Why Saying “Thank You” Matters

Volunteer recruitment, training and management is time-consuming so it’s in both your organisation’s and volunteers’ best interests to make your relationship as fulfilling as it possibly can be. When an organisation works within constrained resources and has its eye firmly fixed on its purpose, taking time for reflection can get pushed down the list of priorities.

Expressing appreciation reassures your volunteers, letting them know that their contribution is making a difference, building their engagement with and commitment to your cause. The recognition that genuine appreciation brings can further motivate them and, if done publicly, can also generate positive publicity and build awareness for your cause.

Appreciation Builds Ongoing Relationships

Thanking volunteers is all about developing relationships with them. Your current volunteers are crucial to your operations on a day-to-day, project delivery basis but at the same time they also act as ambassadors at your events and within their own communities. In this role they raise awareness of, and affinity for, your organisation, bringing in the support of their friends, family and colleagues. In time, they and their loved ones may become donors and legators.

If not taking volunteers’ generosity for granted is crucial, it’s just as important not to give ill-judged thanks – a perfunctory nod, communication via an impersonal “send-all” email or insincere sentiment can cause lasting damage. So how you say thank you matters and should play a vital role in your volunteer management strategy.

Finding a Powerful Way to Say “Thank You”

Ideas for celebrating the work of volunteers range from sending simple but heartfelt handwritten messages to arranging special events; from mentions in your organisation’s annual report to a “Volunteer of the Month” scheme.

In recognising the importance and benefits of saying “thank you” on a regular and ongoing basis, one of our clients, SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, has created the SSAFA Volunteer Book 2017.

Saying thank you to your Volunteers

This online book is a dedicated space for volunteers to share their experiences, talk about their often very personal reasons for getting involved with the charity and see themselves honoured for their contribution. It’s a powerful way of building a lasting tribute to their commitment and strengthening their sense of purpose and community.

Contact Us – personal Online Book enquiry form.

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Eva SeymourSaying Thank You To Your Volunteers

How To Make The Most Of Your Organisation’s Anniversary

Anniversaries, birthdays, significant milestones – why do we put so put so much emphasis on them?

First of all, the science: Art Markman, renowned cognitive scientist at the University of Texas explains: “numbers are a mathematical construct yet our perception of numbers is affected by our experience with them.” What we do is make sense of the world through our relationship with numbers, “we mark landmarks in time like birthdays and anniversaries as a way of remembering what we have done in that time period. They make the passing months and years more memorable.”

A time to celebrate

Individually and collectively, we find comfort in the numbers that mark significant numerical milestones and these can become important occasions for celebration. It’s a time to draw breath, pause and take stock.

Your company or organisation’s anniversary is no different. It’s an opportunity to look back at what’s been achieved, to trace your organisational journey in terms of the passage of time and the emotional journey that’s been travelled, and to thank customers, employees, supporters and stakeholders.

Look to the future

Even more importantly that organisational ‘drawing a line in the sand’ is an excellent platform for looking to the future by reinvigorating your sense of purpose, boosting your profile and reaching new audiences.

A simple Internet search will reveal any number of ideas that can make your anniversary celebrations stand-out newsworthy. But it’s worth avoiding the temptation of ‘just getting on with it’ and take the time to begin your anniversary project with that all-important, objective step back:

Think strategy before tactics

Align the anniversary with strategic business goals to ensure that marking that significant milestone really does give your organisation a powerful boost.

A milestone, however significant for your organisation, isn’t automatically newsworthy in itself. Think how, with the anniversary spotlight trained on your organisation, you can create news hooks – run and publish survey findings, plug into a ‘bigger picture,’ a complementary news story or development, and build positive PR around your announcements of say, new initiatives or growth plans.

Take time to understand how past achievements can contribute to informing future work, and how any celebrations will reflect the culture of your organisation.

Take the time to plan the strategic messages – both internal (eg employees, volunteers, stakeholders) and external (eg supporters, advocates, customers, end-users), that you’ll be conveying throughout the anniversary timeframe.

Have a plan

An anniversary rarely creeps up on you without warning so there’s no excuse for not planning every initiative, partnership, media opportunity and event in advance (and down to the last detail), including how everything ties in to your over-arching objectives.

Set a budget

Establish budgetary parameters for your celebrations as part of the planning process and then stick to them! Again, refer back to how the expenditure allocated will yield a measurable return on investment, eg an upturn in supporter engagement or funds raised.

Make it last – part one

Don’t just focus activities onto one day but make the most of your milestone by keeping the story going throughout the celebratory period, eg plan separate events for discrete audience groups and engage in pre- and post-event publicity.

Make it last – part two

Consider creating memorabilia, souvenirs and/or a special anniversary logo, closely allied to existing brand guidelines, to enhance marketing activity throughout the year.

Online books are one of the most cost-effective ways of creating an ongoing and lasting legacy from your anniversary year PR and marketing activity.

We love anniversaries!

At the Online Book Company we create online books for our clients that are always bespoke and designed to integrate with existing brand guidelines, websites and initiatives. They provide a dedicated, versatile space to fulfil any number of anniversary year objectives, from highlighting volunteer or employee stories to raising funds for a particular campaign.

In the true spirit of celebration, our books are a powerful way to build relationships, affinity and engagement. Accessible from anywhere in the world with an Internet connection, they allow the people who matter most to you to interact, share and contribute to something they care about. Our service can extend to supporting your organisation to get the most out of your book with integrated social media and email marketing campaigns.

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Jonathan HawardHow To Make The Most Of Your Organisation’s Anniversary

When Digital Meets Physical

 We live in an increasingly digital world, but tangibility still matters. It may seem somewhat of a surprise for a digital company to suggest something so shocking…but there is a reason we all have a box of letters stashed in a cupboard at home somewhere!

Nothing feels as wonderful as knowing someone, somewhere is thinking of you. A letter can symbolise that someone, and the time they have taken to write, envelope, stamp and post something they wish for you to read.

Hence, we decided to let hospices know about how we can help them to ‘light up more lives’ not only instantly via email, or social media, but to go back to something tangible and tactile, a letter and a lovely leaflet.

‘Light Up A Life’ is one of the most popular and effective schemes used by hospices for promoting awareness of their worthwhile causes. Finding new and inventive ways to maintain and attract fresh interest in this annual appeal can however be challenging- which is why we created our ‘Light Up A Life’ appeal Online Books.

Much like a simple letter can complement and enhance the ways we introduce our digital product; our Online Books offer hospices an alternative and easy way to help improve upon supporter engagement and strengthen donations at this special time of the year. If you would like us to show you how we can help with an important appeal for your cause, just get in touch- we may even send you a letter so say hello!

   Get in Touch

Beautiful Leaflets

Beautiful Leaflets

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Bethany HibbsWhen Digital Meets Physical

Explore the History of ‘Fort Mifflin’ with The Online Book Company

Screen shot 2015-08-28 at 09.15.03

The historic landmark of Fort Mifflin is the oldest fortification continually used in the US. Over 300 Americans lost their lives here in 1777, when British forces relentlessly attacked the fort from their ships – at a rate of over 1,000 cannon rounds an hour!

The battle escalated into the greatest bombardment of the American Revolution – one which many say changed the course of American history.

Today, Fort Mifflin has been preserved as a National Historic Landmark. The unique fort and its surrounding environment is protected and used to educate and enlighten tourists, families and students about the importance of the site.

Here at the Online Book Company, we have developed a way for individuals to honour patriots and veterans in an everlasting format. The online book allows you to mark memories of loved ones by creating free memorial pages, expressing feelings in words, pictures and video clips – as well as being able to share pages with friends and family.

A memorial walkway has been built at Fort Mifflin with hand-made bricks which can be purchased through the online book. Each brick allows you to make your own mark in history and ranges in size and prices from $75 – $200.

Take a look at the book here.

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Vicki MayrickExplore the History of ‘Fort Mifflin’ with The Online Book Company