Why PRo Bono?
The main condition to accepting a non-profit project is enough time and employees that can be spared for serious work on that particular project. If you can invest the hours and people, free projects are often high-quality decisions.
Why should agencies, sometimes, work for free?
• The main reason why agencies get involved in such projects is their importance to the community and general interest that is the result of such campaigns, they are mostly charity projects. So far, Croatians have shown their exceptional willingness to participate in humanitarian projects since the end 90s when telecommunication company Markot.tel introduced first so-called donation phones. With each new humanitarian project, Croatians have shown their noteworthy willingness to help those in need.
• Free projects are often more fun than paid ones. There are no complicated corporate rules or conservative approaches to PR. Pro Bono projects mostly fall into the category of projects in which you use all your creativity. Because of limited funds, you can test your guerilla marketing skills, which, by its very definition, includes creativity and fun.
• The media, in general, willingly follows humanitarian projects and actions, so there’s an opportunity to hang out and get to know the journalists even better.
• Free projects are often an overture to a future cooperation. If you can prove that you can successfully cooperate with a project organiser you won’t be billing in the end, in some future situations and within some future budgets there could be an item with your agency’s name on it, and this time, you will get paid for your effort.
• In the end, even if you do not continue your cooperation and you did a great job, you will always have a reference to be proud of.
• It doesn’t hurt to mention the sure (no)payment. You won’t have to send any invoices and wait until you’re paid.
With whom and in what way has Manjgura cooperated in the past, Krešimir Macan commented for Poslovni dnevnik:
Since the very first time, when we organised the “Let them hear” action on Croatian Radio-television, which is, to this day, a template for most humanitarian projects in Croatia, we actively participate and help in all projects of general interest. For years now we have been following an association of patients suffering from hepatitis Hepatos in Split. We were the media partners of Epidaurus festival in Cavtat because, for people with great ideas that are located in other parts of the country, it can sometimes be very hard to reach the main national media. These days, we are doing pro bono promotion for the new movie by Dalibor Matanić “Majka asfalta” (Mother of Asphalt), because cultural projects rarely have a budget that will enable them to create a real promotional campaign.
We are always involved in campaigns of general social interest or when someone has a great project and needs a helping hand to get started – we are ready to push as much as we can. I would call that a partnership. We get involved in a project that will, in time, give god results to the entire community. Selection of projects is a matter of estimation: let’s say someone is your long term partner or client and needs a favour because they don’t have a budget – of course, you’ll pitch in. Someone doesn’t have the experience and needs support for a project we consider to be great – there is no dilemma. The only question is to what extent do we get involved and how much time we have with our regular work. If it is necessary and if you have estimated that you’re doing a good thing, you will not charge or condition anything. Sometimes, a simple piece of advice or a contact list of media outlets means a lot to someone who doesn’t have any experience in this field.