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Emergency foster: breaking down the strategies used in a successful plea

  • 1.  Emergency foster: breaking down the strategies used in a successful plea

    Posted 06-25-2021 09:34 AM
    Lots of shelters and rescues are in emergency mode right now, so I thought I'd break down some of the most successful emergency foster messaging strategies I've seen for you. Below is one of my favorite emergency foster posts ever, featuring one of Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA's many successful initiatives. This post utilizes Facebook Live, which can be a very effective tool for emergency foster recruitment, especially when combined with other strategies like press releases.

    They told- and showed!- their supporters WHY their help was needed. Their Facebook live was created on-site at a partner shelter who was in crisis after a hurricane hit. In the video, a staff member tells supporters about the flooding all over the area, gives supporters a tour of the shelter, talks about why CASPCA urgently needs adopters and fosters (they need to make room to bring these pets home) and introduces supporters to some of the pets that need help. 

    They give DETAILS to help supporters connect emotionally and motivate them to help. In the first 30 seconds of the video, for example, we learn that their 5-hour trip took 9 hours due to road closures, and the shelter's staff have been sleeping at the shelter to take care of the pets. 

    They specifically ask for adopters AND foster caregivers

    They introduce the actual pets who need them.

    They give calls to action, both in the live video AND in the text of the post. You can't miss it and it makes it easy for supporters (who may not be watching the video all the way through) to know exactly what they can do to help.

    They make their community feel like they 're right there with them. In addition to putting out a press release, sending word out to their own fosters and volunteers and other strategies, CASPCA followed up on this emergency over the next several days. They thanked their community,  gave them updates on the pets and their need for fosters and adopters, gave them "behind the scenes" peeks into their progress, and celebrated the transport's success with them. 

    See the original live video here.


    Kelly Duer
    Maddie's Fund