UNICEF to create central brand narrative

UNICEF is aiming to develop a central brand narrative to better integrate its marketing and boost its appeal to supporters in the UK, following a restructure of its communications division.


The charity aims to take advantage of what newly appointed head of brand Rebecca Walton calls the “untapped potential” of the brand.

The perception of the UNICEF brand here falls behind its perception in other countries because it has lacked a central brand narrative in the UK, according to Walton. She adds the charity still has work to do to define what its brand should stand for and how it should approach marketing communications.

She says: “UNICEF is very trusted, it’s very rational and intelligent but it underplays on the emotional level and doesn’t have a warm appeal. To get mass support you need that appeal. We’re not bringing it to life and making people feel inspired to support UNICEF.”

“UNICEF has the biggest impact on the lives of children in the UK and around the world but we haven’t found a way to encapsulate it and out it into words.”

As part of the restructure UNICEF has created a raft of marketing rolesdesigned to make its communications and brand marketing “more strategic, more integrated and more effective”.

New roles will focus on insight and integration, CSR and partnerships and public engagement. UNICEF is also looking to “beef up” its sports expertise to build on its existing partnership with the International Cricket Council and extend its reach into other sports.

Walton, a former Save the Children marketer, took on the charity’s first head of brand role in January and will oversee brand strategy. A head of communications role, which is yet to be filled, has also been created to lead UNICEF’s media and ambassador relations team. Both senior roles report to Jane Cooper, director of communications and brand.

Cooper says: “Through telling even more compelling stories about the remarkable ways that UNICEF helps children around the world in creative and innovative ways we know we can inspire more people to support us with donations and with their voice as advocates for children’s rights.”

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