Amnesty Inter­na­tion­al Aus­tralia: David Hicks press insert 2007

Exhibited by
June 02, 2010
Medium of Communication
Online, press advertising
Target Audience
Individuals, regular gift
Type of Charity
Human rights & civil liberties
Country of Origin
Date of first appearance

SOFII’s view

The clever presentation of a compelling message and the chance for involvement in a campaign that could make a real, tangible difference presented AIA with an appropriate opportunity to retest the use of loose inserts to recruit regular givers. It paid off handsomely, and not just in terms of new supporters recruited. In May 2007 David Hicks was brought home to spend the remaining months of his imprisonment in an Australian prison. Amnesty International Australia’s campaigning on multiple fronts will have helped to ensure this result.

Creator / originator

Fundraising Manager (Amnesty International Australia) – Elizabeth Lechlein.
Account Director (Pareto Fundraising) – Dan Geaves.
Account Manager (Pareto Fundraising) – Abi Knight.

Summary / objectives

To recruit 40 new regular givers (known as Human Rights Defenders) for Amnesty International Australia.


The financial benefits of recruiting regular givers (who commit to monthly giving) rather than cash supporters, are well known. Amnesty International Australia is successfully using face-to-face fundraising to recruit thousands of regular givers.

Two years prior to this campaign press inserts had been working but were halted as the project information became dated. So, to re-diversify recruitment channels, a new press insert test was proposed.

In the past inserts had carried a generic theme covering all human rights abuses, but this campaign focused on the specific proposition of bringing David Hicks home to Australia to carry out his remaining jail sentence (David Hicks was the only Australian held captive without trial in the United States’ detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba). It was thought that the relevance, familiarity and relatively positive media attitude to the plight of David Hicks would be likely to lead to better results from an Australian audience than a generic Amnesty International ask.

As well as asking the recipient to become a Human Rights Defender (AIA’s regular giving programme) to help AIA fight injustices such as that suffered by David Hicks, it also included an opportunity to write to the then Australian prime minister about the issue. This engagement device allowed the recipient to become more actively involved in David Hicks’ case.

Special characteristics

  • The insert was directed specifically to potential regular givers since their lifetime value is greater than those of new cash donors.
  • It was based upon a clear proposition: ‘For five years David Hicks has been denied justice. Help end this travesty and defend our human rights everyday with a monthly gift of $XX.’
  • Ask amounts were tailored depending on the publication. National titles were given lower ask options while more niche titles (i.e New Internationalist, Marie Claire) received higher asks.
  • Inclusion of a petition/engagement device to PM John Howard helped to lift response by combining immediate action with the need for ongoing support.
  • The David Hicks case was receiving a lot of press attention at the time. The insert got recipients involved in the issue and allowed them to turn their interest into action.
  • Emotive and compelling use of design and copy.

Influence / impact

  • Diversified regular giver recruitment channels.
  • Identified best performing media publications for future campaigns.
  • To raise much-needed funds and to spread awareness of AIA’s work to eliminate abuse of human rights around the world.


No tests were undertaken for this campaign, although ask amounts and response by publication were tailored to specific publications.


All costs shown are exclusive of GST.

Agency fee$20,000
Print and production$94,230


Recruited 200 new regular givers for Amnesty International Australia with 100 coming from the Sydney Morning Herald alone (a response rate of 0.1%).


  • Illustrates that the right message in the right media works.
  • It’s always a challenge to recruit new regular givers and this insert performed well.
  • The insert was cost effective to produce.
  • Clever use of copy and creative that grabbed people’s attention and detailed a current event to spread awareness and raise funds.