Google Innovation Day. Yee-ha!

google-e1359549299441Last week, Jon, Kate and Amy joined lots of other people from in and around Oxfam at the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford. But we weren’t there for the art. We were there to innovate. With Google.

The Google Innovation Day was set up to get us to think around the issue of how to engage with a younger audience. Aside from the occasional group ‘yee-ha!’(enforced, not spontaneous), this was a good opportunity for us to take a serious look at the 18-30 age group. And it was all thanks to our brilliant digital team and the really useful partnership they’ve built up with the helpful folks at Google.

The internet giant also provided us with some really interesting research insights. Like a reminder that 67% of young adults still live with their parents. That the willingness to donate to charity is strongest among females aged 16 – 24. And that, having entered adulthood at the onset of recession, many in the younger generation have never known the prosperity of their parents’ cohorts.

We also got the opportunity to question a panel of under 30s. Aged from 21 – 26, it was clear the group would not be easy converts for any charity. The student was more inclined to sponsor her friends’ fundraising efforts. The designer did give to a few charities but had decided to stop all direct debits until she was earning more money. And the musician who lived at home with his parents only gave occasionally to causes that touched his own life.

The bottom line was, to motivate any of these individuals to engage, charity needs to be relevant and interesting to them. Oxfam is not a cancer charity. We don’t help animals. The majority of our work takes place outside the UK. But we do really interesting things – most of which people don’t know about. And it was these things that formed the basis for much of the afternoon’s brainstorm. Think toilet worms and you’re on the right track.

Come and talk to us if you want to find out more about the day. And be sure to ask us about the Gangnam style ice-breaker, too.

PS: Here are a few interesting youth-orientated campaigns that got a mention:

WWF, I will if you will.

Converse, Domaination.

Absolut, Inspire.