The Benji's Buddies program is a dream of Joe and Kathleen Camp's.
The concept has been talked about and thought about for several years and the Camps' dream
is to get the program funded, up and running. The Benji's Buddies Foundation's
sole goal will be to measurably increase the levels of animal adoptions around the country. All animals!
At its heart Benji's Buddies is a cause-marketing
program designed to measurably improve pet adoption levels across
the country and help animal shelters and rescue groups raise money. It’s a simple, straight-forward
program without a lot of rhetoric, designed simply to “accomplish”… and measure results.
Benji plus media raises money and empties shelters.
This is not theorem but tested truth. The original Benji was adopted from a shelter and that fact, according to American Humane, caused more than one million adoptions nationwide. That is why a search was mounted in shelters all across the country to find the current Benji who was ultimately adopted from the Humane Society of South Mississippi in Gulfport. Now, whenever those big brown adopted eyes appear in the media, money comes into shelters and pets are adopted. During the search for Benji, adoptions went up wherever we went, and from the beginning of the search, through the promotion of Benji Off the Leash in 2004, and the time after, more than one billion media exposures have been generated for shelters and rescue groups everywhere!
After Benji’s adoption in South Mississippi, that facility had the biggest month in its history, completely emptying the shelter. The sad side of this result is that a month or two later , once the exposure was gone and forgotten, it was back to business as usual with full shelters begging for adopters. Thus, the thrust of Benji’s Buddies is to provide continuity of exposure through Benji media visitations, PSA’s, shelter promotional materials, and advertising. To, in effect, actually brand homeless shelter pets as Benji’s Buddies. To brand so well that whenever a family considers a pet, the Benji Buddy name will come to mind and trigger a trip to the local shelter instead of a puppy mill or a pet store; a multiple benefit, for not only does that save the life of a homeless pet, a Benji Buddy, it eliminates the sale of yet another puppy produced for profit.
When Benji media exposure is directed toward raising funds for local shelters money comes in. A fund raiser built around Benji to benefit the Mississippi Animal Rescue League raised more than $100,000 for their new shelter construction program and focused an enormous amount energy and exposure on the League which will have continuing benefits. Ultimately, with corporate and foundation support, the goal of the Benji's Buddies program will be to bring paid advertising budgets into markets all across the country and to help shelters cover the costs for Joe & Benji to attend fund-raising and promotional functions like the one memtioned above.
Benji’s Buddies, like any other good marketing program, is a results-oriented program, designed to be measured. Money in and pets out are specific, finite measures of the program’s success.
Shelter Fund Raisers:
We know that well-planned shelter fund raisers in local markets focused around Benji and Benji’s Buddies, with Joe and Benji in the market making media visits, speaking, and appearing at the events to meet and greet and having photos taken can raise money for local shelters while raising adoptin levels at the smae time. A complete fund-raiser packet will ultimately be developed to be provided to shelters participating in the program. Printed material (posters, mailers, tickets, press releases, ads, PSA's, media event sheets, etc.) will be provided in the kit. Details of advance timing, how to line up a press tour, how to get components donated, what usually has to be paid for and what doesn’t, ticket prices, and effective methodology will all be detailed, as will a typical accounting of expected results. And, again, ultimately, we'd like to be able to provide materials at no cost and help shelters defray the costs of Joe and Benji coming into their markets.
Public Service Announcements:
Several types of television, radio, and newspaper PSA’s are planned to be available to shelters, all featuring Benji and focused upon the fact that Benji was adopted from a shelter. One type will be focused upon getting shelter pets, all of Benji’s Buddies, adopted, one type will be a generic fund raiser, and one specifically tailored to a major fund-raising gala event.
Shelter Promotion Kits:
Benji’s Buddies posters for placement around town encouraging folks to come to the local shelter and adopt a Benji Buddy
Ad proofs for placement in local newspapers
Benji’s Buddies booklets for new pet owners with behavioral and care advice.
“I adopted a Benji Buddy” pins, buttons and stickers.
"Benji Buddy on Board" car stickers (Joe's favorite).
And, ultimately, paid advertising designed to leverage PSA's into a program of continuing, ever-present media reminders that Benji's Buddies make wonderful, caring, loving pets, just as Benji herself is.
Benji's Buddies Foundation
The Benji's Buddies program will be managed and administered by the Benji's Buddies Foundation, a non-profit corporation currently being formed specifically to utilize Benji’s awareness and cache to help get animals, all types of animals, adopted by branding them as Benji’s Buddies, thus saving lives and reducing euthanasia. And to help shelters and rescue organizations raise money for better facilities. Mulberry Square Productions, owner of all of the Benji copyrights and trademarks, and Joe and Kathleen Camp, owners of the dog who plays Benji have jointly donated the use of the Benji trademarks and copyrights and the use of Benji herself for the purposes of accomplishing the mission of the foundation. And Joe and Kathleen are donating one dollar of their royalty on every copy of IThe SOul of a Horse sold during the last three months of 2008. Joe Camp is the creator of the character Benji, the writer, director, and producer of all the Benji movies, and the chief executive officer of Mulberry Square Productions.
For more information:
Benji Goes on Strike - Gets Deal
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