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Case Study

How We Empowered THRIVE! to Grow with Branded Outreach Materials

by Paul David “PDP”, Co-Founder & CEO

Sometimes, programs that are intended to help can do more harm than good. This was the discovery THRIVE! founder, Dr. Omolara Fatiregun, made when she worked as deputy director of Washington DC’s juvenile justice agency. To her dismay, she found the department was investing in programs that were leading to rising re-arrest rates — and researchers had known these interventions were ineffective for 30 years. 

This experience inspired Dr. Omolara to found THRIVE!, an equity-focused nonprofit that aims to help school districts, municipalities, cities, and other government agencies in the US address equity issues through budgeting. Dr. Omolara developed a research-backed software solution that helps government officials create more equitable budgets that improve learning outcomes for all students, regardless of their background. As part of this work, they produce THRIVE! Guides that analyze the use of evidence-based approaches so that decision-makers can allocate resources to the most impactful programs. 

THRIVE! connected with Literal Humans via Camelback Ventures, a venture capital firm that focuses on empowering entrepreneurs of color and women. The aim of the initial engagement with THRIVE! was to create a solid branding foundation on which Dr. Omolara and her team could continue to build and use to raise more funding, consisting of four deliverables:

  • Two cold outreach email templates for each of THRIVE!’s seven ideal customer profiles (ICPs)
  • Six website landing pages
  • Three video scripts
  • One communication guide 

The Challenge

The biggest challenge for the Literal Humans team was the complexity of the project: THRIVE! needed messaging around equity-focused programs that takes into account the sensitivity and divisiveness of the issue. Dr. Omolara had found that while people in more progressive states were open to language like “equity,” “systemic racism,” and “social-emotional learning,” folks in more conservative areas found these terms accusatory and divisive. Therefore, the LH team had to come up with alternative ways to frame the problem and solution using more positive, inclusive language.

Additionally, each of the six ICPs required targeted messaging relevant to their work, role, priorities, and ability to influence decision-makers. They are:

  • Human Resources Managers
  • Chief Finance Officers
  • Chief Equity Officers
  • Chief Strategy Officers
  • Chief Performance Officers/Chief of Staff
  • Leadership (Board members and Superintendents)

The Deliverables

Email Outreach Templates

At the start of the engagement, Dr. Omolara shared that she and the team had successfully landed clients through cold outreach emails, and this was a strategy they wanted to continue pursuing. THRIVE! shared these initial emails, and the LH team used them to put together two batches of cold emails for each of the seven ICPs. These emails address the subject of budgeting for equity in positive, non-divisive language, and each is tailored to each ICP’s concerns, priorities, and sphere of influence.

Landing Pages

The THRIVE! website required an overhaul of both the copy and visuals. As with the email outreach templates, the strategy was to rewrite the copy using more positive language and avoiding any of the terms the THRIVE! team had identified as divisive or inflammatory, and write separate landing pages addressing each of the main ICPs, resulting in six landing pages in total. Naume, one of LH’s Senior Writers, worked on the copy while Olivia, one of our Senior Designers, created a new visual identity in line with the brand’s messaging and goals.

Video Scripts

THRIVE! also asked LH to create scripts for three short promotional videos of 30, 45, and 60 seconds. The 30-second video is a brief introduction to THRIVE!’s work and targets two ICPs: Chief Equity Officers and School Leadership, and can be used as either a ‘welcome’ email for new users or embedded in one of the landing pages. The 60-second video is an expanded version of the 30-second one, intended for use as part of an email campaign or an introductory or welcome video. Both scripts include directions for creating an animated video to improve engagement. 

The 45-second video is a talking head of Dr. Omolara’s founder story, which aims to demonstrate that she has not only the necessary education and professional credentials but also first-hand experience with the problem she’s solving. The tone evokes empathy toward Black women founders such as Omolara while raising awareness of the issues surrounding equity in schools and the consequences for children and their families. This video is intended for investors to help THRIVE! raise more funds. 

Communication Guide

The aim of our work with THRIVE! was to empower the team with an outreach and communication strategy they could use to continue to raise funding and secure more clients. Having worked extensively on the branding, messaging, and tone of voice for the first three deliverables, the LH content team put together a Communication Guide for THRIVE! to move forward with.

This comprehensive document sets out the following guidelines:

  • Using positive and inclusive language when communicating about budgeting for equity (including terms to use and ones to avoid).
  • Messaging guidelines for each of the seven ICPs.
  • Recommendations for using the three video scripts.
  • A guide to the landing pages and a replicable process the THRIVE! team can follow to create more landing pages in the future.
  • Email outreach strategy for the two batches of emails. 

Empowering Clients So They Can Thrive

Dr. Omolara came to Literal Humans with a clear ask: to create strategic, conversion-focused resources that could help her sell THRIVE!’s product and services to school districts, municipalities, and cities while raising more money from investors. Working within their budgetary constraints, we were able to create materials that have empowered the THRIVE! team to continue growing and pursuing their mission.

Dr. Omolara was pleased with the final deliverables and wants to continue working with us — once again proving the power of having a team of literal humans in your corner. 

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