Manifesto is a multi-award winning, agile agency of creatives, coaches, strategists and technologists who collaborate with exceptional organisations to help them own their future.

London, United Kingdom
Founded: 2011
Staff: 58
Content Management
User Experience
Digital Design
motion graphics
Video production
Website development
website design
content strategy

and 13 more

Diabetes UK
London Borough of Camden
Cancer Research UK
The English-Speaking Union
Notting Hill Genesis
The Health Foundation
Visit England
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Royal British Legion

and 2 more

Sector Experience
Housing Associations

and 2 more


Using data to drive strategy for Operation Smile

by Gemma Reeve

Operation Smile, founded in 1982, is one of the oldest and largest volunteer-based organisations providing hundreds of thousands of safe surgeries for children born with cleft lip and cleft palate worldwide.

Operation Smile needed to grow their brand awareness amongst target audiences.

"It’s been a real pleasure to work with the team at Manifesto for the past number of years. In 2018 we approached them with the aim of establishing digital as a new channel of acquisition for Operation Smile UK. We felt that this would add to our acquisition portfolio, and future proof the organisation in an increasingly digital world. The programme has been hugely successful, not only in its ability to efficiently acquire donors and support other acquisition streams, but also as a support to retention, where channels have seen a related lift, and many lapsed donors have been reactivated. In recent times a well established digital programme has allowed us to weather COVID-19 more effectively. Ultimately this channel has increased our ability to execute our mission of caring for children born with cleft lip and cleft palate in low and middle income countries." Mairéad O’Callaghan, Head of Individual Giving and Legacy, UK & Ireland, Operation Smile

Cross channel digital marketing strategy

Manifesto created a digital marketing programme by carefully establishing the correct digital parameters to capture an audience with a high propensity to give. Our team then created an approach to facilitate clear, frictionless digital donor journeys, to recruit new donors.

To do this, Manifesto developed a cross channel always-on campaign strategy. The campaign approach balanced targeted awareness with prospective target audiences, whilst re-capturing highly relevant site visitors through targeted remarketing.

The prospective audiences followed two main approaches: lookalikes and interests. Manifesto focussed on raising the average value per gift which involved the creation of several different cuts of donors, with a focus on higher-value donors, and developed these data lists to build lookalike audiences.

For interest-based audiences we identified relevant targeting groups with specific demographics and interests that most aligned with Operation Smile’s core audience and charitable purpose.

Digital testing to optimise conversions

At Manifesto we let data lead our digital strategy. This allows us to make continuous improvements to our digital marketing campaigns, reacting to external factors as and when they arise.

We worked with the team at Operation Smile to understand the full donor journey and examine those journeys to identify points of friction.

This required an extensive testing plan, first optimising the conversion rate by focusing on the optimum content, length and structure of the landing page. The team then focused on the creative approach, testing the effect of different patients and copy sentiment.

Improving the rate of conversion by 114%

On-site donation journeys

Through a series of informed changes resulting in a redesigned landing page and optimising the on-site digital donation journey, we increased the conversion rate by 114% for the test compared from the year to date average.

Patient testing

We looked at the effect different patients had on ROAS by testing a variety of emotive patient imagery using Facebook’s split testing tool. The results of this test increased the ROAS by 9% from the year to date average.

Messaging testing

By testing the effect message sentiment on ad copy for search, we increased the average conversion rate by 173% from the year to date average.


digital marketing
digital marketing agency
Facebook Advertising
Google Adwords Campaign
Testing & Optimization