A Place to Remember

A Place to Remember

Alzheimer's Research UK

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The background

A large number of donors to Alzheimer’s Research UK donate in memory of a friend or relative, often someone who has suffered with dementia.

The charity wanted to create a better experience for these supporters, one that helped them to share the donation more widely, with friends and family as well as the wider community of people donating to Alzheimer’s Research UK.

It was important to create something online that would work for people donating through the website and add to virtual online tribute that could be seen by others.

Fundraising concepts

We started by thinking about the audience: the reasons why people give in memory of others. We worked with the in-memory fundraising team at Alzheimer’s Research to think through the types of tributes that might work and then created three concepts to carry out user research with.

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Research with supporters

We carried out in-depth qualitative interviews with people who had given in memory to Alzheimer’s Research within the last year.

We talked to them about the experience, the ideas we had and how they felt about them. This helped us choose the best concept (the one that a supporter said gave them excited goosebumps thinking about it) and gave us helpful insight into how people might want to share their tributes with others.

 

Digital build

In the winning concept supporters can pick any physical location (in the UK or beyond) using Google Maps and then create a virtual memorial, including a photo and a written tribute.

The idea resonated really well with people, but it was one of the more technically complex to build, using the Google maps APIs. The trickiest bit of this was balancing the way that the Google API and Google Earth works with wanting to make the process as simple and emotionally resonant as possible.

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Testing the usability

We ran user testing with people who matched the audience profile and who had made online donations to charity in the past year. This helped us check how easy it was to use and spot any areas for improvement.

Systems integration

To set it up we needed to integrate it into ARUK’s existing donations process, which is hosted by Committed Giving.

We worked with them to make it a seamless process to donate and then create a tribute, carrying through the information about the donation from the form to the tribute set up pages.

It also integrates into the donation thank you email, giving a link to the tribute or for those who haven’t created one a link to create one later. We made sure that it was easy for people to share their tribute on social media and by email.

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The finished In Memory product

About a third of all in-memory donors for Alzheimer's Research UK choose to go on to create a tribute. Of these around a fifth share their tributes on social media.

As well as increasing the donations received, this has also made giving an in-memory donation a much richer experience for supporters.

Tributes have been created in all sorts of places around the world, and it is a hugely moving memorial. Have a look at the tributes to see the memorials and a map of all the places people have picked.