INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis-based Kiwanis International launched its first major ad campaign and it’s aimed at telling the public about its mission: helping children.

The Indianapolis Business Journal (http://bit.ly/2q3M6Bk) reported that the campaign was prompted by a recent study conducted by Kiwanis that found fewer than one in 12 people understand what the organization does.

“The Kiwanis have done tremendous work in this community and others. They’ve just done a terrible job of telling people about it,” said Bruce Bryant, president of locally based Promotus Advertising.

Bryant estimates it may take a commitment of up to 20 percent of the organization’s $10 million annual budget to address the problem and reserve Kiwanis’ loss in membership in “a serious way.”

Over the last year, the Kiwanis spent more than $350,000 to overhaul its website; create ads showcasing its mission; and place those ads for five weeks in Orlando, Florida and Cincinnati. The ad campaign started in April.

Kiwanis Chief Communications Officer Amy Wiser says the organization saw a 700 percent traffic increase on its website just two weeks into the campaign.

Glenn Sparks, a Purdue University professor who has studied the effects of media on people, groups and gatherings, said many organizations have failed to adjust to the internet and social media. Sparks said organizations have been focusing on in person meetings instead of expanding to the internet.

Kiwanis is involved with many projects aimed to help children, including building playgrounds, sponsoring literacy programs and supporting youth leadership programs.


Information from: Indianapolis Business Journal, http://www.ibj.com