LCFA Website thumbnailAbout


LCFA’s mission is the dramatic improvement in survivorship of lung cancer patients through the funding of transformative science, with the ultimate goal of curing the disease. To accomplish this, LCFA will work to raise both the funds and the national profile of lung cancer in order to substantially increase support of innovative and groundbreaking research efforts.


The Challenge

LCFA had an ambitious fundraising goal: 30 days of fundraising for national lung cancer awareness month. They lacked a clear vision for the campaign or the technical infrastructure they needed to roll out this campaign on their website, and needed support in marketing and advertising the campaign to important audiences.

What we did

In 2015 and 2016, Whole Whale worked on focused web campaigns, digital advertising, and analytics projects to increase the impact of LCFA.

Web design and development

30 ways LCFA
Whole Whale designed and implemented a custom “30 Days, 30 Ways” campaign page that synced with LCFA’s eTapestry donation platform, including a calendar feature and integration with personal fundraising pages. We were able to quickly design and build this page in a tight timeline in time for the campaign launch.

Digital Strategy

The small but mighty LCFA team knew that converting their existing fans and supporters would be crucial to hitting their fundraising goals. Whole Whale worked closely with their team to design an email series to drive donations. We ensured every email was campaign tagged so we could measure the success of each email, and trained the team along the way so they can use this strategy in the future. We also worked on social media strategy including a rollout plan for Facebook and Twitter.

Google AdWords Grant

We first made sure LCFA was taking full advantage of free advertising via the Google AdWords grant for this campaign. We then created an advertising strategy for the campaign, which included carving out key audiences: existing email subscribers, Facebook fans, and a new audience likely to donate to this cause. We then worked with the LCFA team to create copy and execute on multiple rounds of testing to optimize our messaging. Running these ads helped LCFA increase donations by 7% and build an engaged audience for future fundraising campaigns.

After the campaign ended, we performed analysis to find insights and recommendations for LCFA to use in future campaigns. We also held trainings on the Google AdWords grant and Google Analytics to build capacity among their marketing team.

Data to Donors

In 2017, we built on our previous work with LCFA and introduced a new strategy – Data to Donors. We analyzed LCFA’s donor database and historical donor behavior. We segmented their donor audience by past giving behavior, including number of lifetime donations, last gift amount, retained donors, lapsed donors, and downgraded donors. We then developed a targeted email communication strategy for each donor segment. We worked with the LCFA team to develop email copy and campaign tag all traffic to see how different donor segments behaved on-site.

At the end of the campaign, the data allowed us to compare conversion rates for each donor segment. One group in particular far outperformed the others, with a conversion rate 4x that of the next best performing group. Segmenting LCFA’s donors in this way provided the team with insight into who their donors are and what kind of messaging works best. These takeaways will prove helpful and inform LCFA’s decisions for future marketing and fundraising campaigns.


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