Brand Value Proposition
“Ending poverty one student at a time”

The Smith Family - BVP Winter Appeal


The Smith Family had a strong, competitive offer driven by a powerful theory of change. After many years working as a ‘children’s charity’ they focussed their efforts on education as the most effective way to help stop poor children from becoming poor adults.

Developing a new messaging approach that recognised this evolution was a crucial step towards a communications strategy for one of Australia’s most recognised charities.

A Value Proposition works as a positioning statement that can be communicated across the organisation and into the public. It helps staff, management, program leaders and volunteers understand their shared purpose, while providing a foundation for public facing communications.

Developing an effective Value Proposition required buy-in from the full organisation, and the collaboration of creative, strategy and management.

The Smith Family - BVP Winter Appeal


The Smith Family needed to a new communication strategy to help better position their charity amongst other large welfare organisations.


Developed a Value Proposition including a board presentation, prototypes, to brought it all to life.


A new communications strategy helped grow their fundraising stream and expand their educational programs including procuring a government grant worth $48million!

The Challenge

Extensive market research had revealed that The Smith Family was failing to achieve differentiation from other large welfare organisations – a label The Smith Family were uncomfortable with.

As a team of problem solvers, many members of the organisation began creating solutions – from copy lines to strategic intentions. The Smith Family needed a group of creative outsiders to help them define and commit to a singular, motivating and distinctive Brand Value Proposition.

The Smith Family - BVP Winter Appeal

The Solution

Through workshops and interviews, we pin-pointed The Smith Family’s desire to stop the cycle of poverty. We recognised that children from poor families suffer today, and are more likely to grow up to be the poor parents of the future. We believed this was something we could use to create a compelling and distinctive statement.

We wanted to bring the problem and the specific solution into the line. Poverty, education, and the focus on the singular child, were critical elements which came together in the line “Ending poverty, one student at a time.”

We developed a Board presentation, prototypes for how the Value Proposition could be brought to life, and went on to create staff roadshow materials and presentation packs for every member of The Smith Family’s 600+ team.

The Smith Family - BVP Appeal
The Smith Family - BVP Appeal
The Smith Family - BVP Winter Appeal

The Results

Knowing precisely how to articulate their role within the sector helped transform the organisation. New messaging, built around education saw the growth of their fundraising stream, and the expansion of education programs. Within three years, The Smith Family procured a $48 Million grant from the Australian Federal Government to roll out their Learning for Life program. 

A strong theory of change, articulated effectively, was the first step towards a new communications strategy – one that united the organisation and helped fulfill the founding mandate of The Smith Family; to help children in need.

Marlin Communications Australia

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