Coinz Meanz Beanz For Charity

A humble tin of baked beans has allowed an Aberdeen charity to coin in over £100 thanks to a local firm.

Bean tin sprouts into charity cash

The store cupboard staple sprouted into £120 for Cash for Kids thanks to Aberdeen-based marketing and communications consultancy Innes Associates. Over the past year, staff at the firm have been putting loose change into an old baked bean tin, collecting a total of £16.15 in coppers and silvers. Staff members then individually matched the amount, with the total then being doubled by the firm.

Cash for Kids is currently running its annual Coats for Kids appeal, which aims to provide warm winter clothing to hundreds of underprivileged north-east children, and will use the donation to help meet an anticipated 600 applications. The charity supports disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under the age of 18 living in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. All of the money donated to the charity is spent in the local area.

Beans and coins

Normally the preserve of the bottom of pockets and purses, coppers and silvers are often an irritation to the public, but the team at Innes Associates grew to love the pesky pennies. In total they collected £1.33 in pennies, £1.32 in 2ps, £2.90 in 5ps, £4.20 in 10ps, £5.40 in 20ps and £1 in 50ps, along with a rouge American cent.

Charlie Innes, managing director of Innes Associates, said: “This was a really simple fundraising idea and it was surprising just how much we raised as a result of some loose change. We all often curse the coppers and small silvers that rattle around in our pockets or purses, so this put them to great use for a worthwhile local charity.”

Charlie Innes, managing director, Innes Associates

Charlie Innes

Michelle Ferguson, Cash for Kids’ charity manager, said: “This was a fantastic fundraising concept and goes to show that little things can accumulate into substantial amounts. Loose change is a bugbear of many people and this is an initiative many other firms could also adopt.

Cash for Kids logo“All of the money that is raised for Cash for Kids is used to support young people here in the north-east. Instead of being used to support our Coats for Kids appeal, a donation of this value could help a family to purchase clothes, bedding and other essentials for their children, or fund quarter of the purchase cost of a specialist wheelchair for a disabled child.”


Mission Christmas Appeal Takes Off With Bond’s Help

Cash for Kids logoInnes Associates has been supporting Cash for Kids over the past year and yesterday we helped to launch the charity’s annual Christmas present appeal.  Read the full story below or head to or to find out how you can help.

Mission Christmas Appeal Takes Off With Bond’s Help

Cash for Kids' Mission ChristmasAn annual festive campaign to ensure that underprivileged children living in north-east Scotland receive a present this Christmas has been officially launched by Aberdeen charity Cash for Kids.

The charity’s Mission Christmas appeal encourages members of the public to purchase an extra toy or gift when they are doing their Christmas shopping and donate it unwrapped to the appeal.  Cash for Kids has set up 20 donation points across the north-east in order to make it as easy as possible for people to donate items.

It is estimated that around 10,000 children in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire live in poverty.  Cash for Kids is one of a number of local charities that run an annual Christmas toy appeal in order to provide these children with at least one toy or gift on Christmas day.

Bond Offshore Helicopters is the main sponsor of the appeal.  One of the firm’s pilots and Cash for Kids’ Courage the Cat were on hand to help Santa Claus load the first batch of presents bound for his workshop at the North Pole into one of Bond’s helicopters.  This year’s appeal was kick-started with a donation of 168 quality toys from Aberdeen’s Disney Store.

Last year’s Mission Christmas appeal saw around £160,000 worth of presents generously donated by individuals and businesses in the north-east.  This helped to ensure that 2,966 underprivileged children in the region were guaranteed a Christmas present.  Cash for Kids expects to fulfil a similar number of applications on behalf of children this year.

Mission Christmas appeal lifts off

Bond staff, Santa and Northsound DJs Greigsy and Aylissa launch the appeal

Michelle Herd, charity manager, said: “Christmas is a magical time of the year, but for thousands of children living in poverty in the north-east often it is not, with many not receiving a present.  Cash for Kids’ Mission Christmas appeal aims to ensure that as many children as possible in this situation wake up on Christmas morning to the joy of a new gift.

“Last year we distributed over 10,000 presents to youngsters in the area and we have already received over 1,000 applications on behalf of children.  All gifts and donations are gratefully received, no matter how large or small, and should be unwrapped.

“We are really pleased to have Bond as the main supporter of our appeal this year and their assistance is really appreciated.  The Mission Christmas appeal is a huge logistical task for us and we are indebted to everyone who helps to make it operate successfully.”

North Pole bound

Greigsy, Santa and Aylissa

Luke Farajallah, managing director, Bond Offshore Helicopters, said:  “Cash for Kids is one of the most worthy charities in Aberdeen, and as a locally based business we feel the responsibility to play our part in making Christmas a special time of year for all children.  It is heart-breaking to understand that 10,000 children in the Aberdeenshire area live in poverty, and it is this fact that has inspired us to step up and make a difference.

“We are extremely proud to be the main sponsor of this event, and we would urge local people and businesses to play their part by also making a donation, however small, in the full knowledge that they will be bringing some Christmas magic into the lives of the children who need it most.”

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity.  It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area.  All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18.  More information on Cash for Kids can be found at, or telephone 01224 337010.

Can running benefit your business performance?

The name McLaren has long been associated with speed and never more so than in the Innes Associates’ office of late…

Our very own PR account manager Ian McLaren recently completed a hat trick of 10K runs held in the north-east and at each of these events – The Glenlivet 10K, Run Balmoral and the City of Aberdeen Baker Hughes 10k – he finished in under 45 minutes. (Well done again!)Ian_McLaren_Race

Like many exercise enthusiasts, Ian enjoys running for a variety of reasons. Along with all the well-documented benefits, there is now a growing belief that working out can help a business’s bottom line as well as the employees’ waistlines!

According to Zest magazine you can increase your mental functions by going running as it boosts blood flow to the brain and helps it receive oxygen and nutrients, making you more productive at work. This theory is echoed by, which also states that running is positively beneficial to your grey matter. Their website quotes a recent Swedish study, which found a clear link between high levels of aerobic fitness and better results in an IQ test – making running the ideal workout for a brain boost.

Many businesses today also encourage staff to take on physical challenges in order to raise money for worthwhile causes and, indeed, Ian used his trio of races to gather sponsorship for VSA, one of Aberdeen’s major social care charities.

Increased fitness + increased mental agility + increased support for good causes = a very healthy hobby. Time to grab those trainers?

Celebrating business anniversaries

Innes Associates ten year anniversary logo.

Innes Associates’ ten year anniversary logo.

Innes Associates celebrates its tenth year in business in 2013, representing a decade of providing companies throughout Aberdeen and beyond with marketing, public relations and advertising services.

We’re proud of our history and, as those of you who communicate with us via email may have noticed, we’ve developed a special ten year anniversary logo to mark our recent birthday.

Our managing director, Charlie Innes, also took some time to share his thoughts on his career in the marketing world – including his last ten years as a business owner – with the good people at Aberdeen Business News.  You can read the full interview with Charlie here.

Celebrating a significant anniversary is important for businesses, as well as their staff, clients and suppliers.  It demonstrates experience and fortitude and instils confidence among stakeholders.  There are a number of ways of making people feel part of the achievement, including celebratory events, charity fundraisers and the production of commemorative items.  The possibilities are many and varied; admittedly budget considerations will play a part but with some creative thinking the ‘feel-good factor’ can certainly be shared with a wider audience.

If you would like support with celebrating a business milestone, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.  You can also watch this space for updates on our own tenth anniversary celebrations.

Innes Associates shows support for Cash for Kids

Innes Associates is pleased to provide north-east charity Cash for Kids with public relations support in connection with the launch of its Mission Christmas Appeal 2012.

Cash for Kids’ Mission Christmas Appeal encourages people to donate toys or make cash donations towards gifts for children throughout the north-east who otherwise would not receive any presents on Christmas day.  This year’s campaign has been kick-started with a donation of over 100 soft toys from Aberdeen’s Disney Store.  Cash for Kids distributed 2,444 gifts to youngsters in the area last year and anticipates that demand will be even greater in 2012.

“We have already received over 1,500 applications on behalf of children who are unlikely to be visited by Santa this year,” says Michelle Herd, charity manager, Cash for Kids.  “Most of these applications were received prior to the official launch of our appeal, so we are urging as many people as possible to get behind it.

“All gifts and donations will be gratefully received, no matter how large or small.  We have set up 24 drop-off points for gifts throughout Aberdeen city and shire to help make it easier for people to make a contribution.”

Previously known as the Christmas Toy Appeal, Cash for Kids’ Mission Christmas Appeal has been running since the charity’s launch in 1996 and has grown in scale each year.  Further information on the appeal, including details of gift drop-off points, is available at

Charity fundraising: Supporting good causes

Running shoesHere at Innes Associates we are always keen to do our bit to support organisations that help others.  Over the years we’ve walked over hot coals, taken part in walks, got on our bikes and even bounced up and down, all in aid of raising money for charity.

Last month Ian took on the challenge of raising money for Alzheimer Scotland when he took to the streets of Aberdeen for the City of Aberdeen Baker Hughes 10k race.  Although not quite keeping up with the blistering pace of the winner who crossed the finishing line in 32mins 23secs – nearly a minute ahead of the second fastest runner – Ian did achieve a personal best on what was a rather calm, sunny and hot Sunday morning.

He finished the 6.2 mile course as the 369th fastest runner in a field of 3,667 competitors in a time of 45mins and 08secs – nearly two minutes faster than on the same route last year.  Well done to Ian and everyone else who ran the race.

Christmas comes but once a year

Christmas presentsIt may only last one day every year, but Christmas seems to get earlier each year.  Last year, Christmas goods were jostling for space in supermarket aisles with back to school items.  But for some businesses, advance planning for the festive season is a priority.  In the world of publishing, the final planning for those glossy Christmas editions of magazines that are sold in December happens in August.  Not to be outdone, we completed an order of Christmas menus for one client back in April!  And although the majority of summer still lies ahead (fingers crossed), it is probably the ideal time to start thinking about what you might need for Christmas gifts.

Over recent years there has been a move by many firms to send e-cards instead of posting cards at Christmas.  This has been driven partly by the cost of postage and the time involved in writing and sending them.  But isn’t it lovely to get an envelope through the post that doesn’t contain a bill?  Perhaps you want to look at getting cards custom designed or print your details onto charity cards you’ve purchased.

A good way to make Christmas last all year – and for you to be a permanent reminder to your clients – is to give them a calendar or diary.  These come in all shapes and sizes and there is plenty of variation on the theme too.  Instead of a wall mounted calendar, you could look at a desktop version or create a mouse mat sized calendar doodle pad.

Perhaps you give your clients a gift at the end of the year?  If you have a number of female clients, you could look at supporting a good cause with your purchases.  Inspired Soap is part of Aberdeen-based charity Inspire and produces a range of good quality fragrant soaps and hand creams – including bog myrtle, which helps repel the Scottish midge!  You could support the charity by purchasing some of the gifts and then package them up into a nice hamper.

The options for Christmas gifts really are endless and very much dependant on your budget.  Get in touch with us to discuss your needs.

Just before you go, here’s another little fact.  Christmas Comes But Once A Year is a 1936 animated short film produced by New York-based Fleischer Studios.  It is the story of a professor who discovers on Christmas morning that children in a local orphanage are very upset to have received broken toys as presents.  He goes out of his way to make new toys for them out of household goods and appliances and when he dresses as Santa Claus and delivers the toys to the children they are overjoyed.