My Four Favourite SXSW Slideshares
Fundraising Inspiration for a Friday Afternoon (my latest article round-up)

Is Charity Comparative Advertising a Good Idea?

ASDA TESCO Comparison

Could adverts like the above soon feature charities? 

Possibly, after the Committee of Advertising Practice announced a consultation on whether to allow charities to use comparative advertising.

The announcement has been greeted with caution in Marketing Week and Third Sector  with worries that charities will focus any such adverts on efficiency, rather than impact.

So far the UK public have seemed relatively indifferent to comparing charities, with sites such as Intelligent Giving and Guidestar not really attracting too much attention or appearing to change giving behaviour.

I wonder if any charities will be bold and confident enough to use comparative ads? If they do, what (or who) would they compare themselves with? 

Here are a couple of ideas for adverts that might appear in the future...

Direct comparisons between rival charities

Last year we rescued 350 stray dogs, our rival only rescued 240.

For every £10 you give we feed 15 hungry children, charity x only feed 8 for £10.

We provided 300,000 hours of hands on care, our competitors only provided 150,000 hours.

Comparisons between charities generally

We only spend 5% of our income on admin costs, the charity average is 15%.

We help more animals in the UK than all the other animal charities put together.

More of our money goes direct to our beneficiaries than any other charity.

We spend less on adverts and junk mail than the top 10 fundraising charities.


If charity marketing was to go this way, then it could be a slippery slope with people losing their trust in charities generally and overall giving could be affected. I'll watch how this progresses with interest.