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Every hour, someone in the UK is diagnosed with Parkinson’s. There are currently around 150,000 in the UK living with the condition, which presents a significant range of physical and psychological symptoms and progressively affects the person’s quality of life. Parkinson’s UK drives better care and treatments, and works to bring forward the day when no one fears Parkinson’s disease.


  • Implement a new ESP and integrate with a new donation platform
  • Implement automated programs to deliver timely and relevant communications
  • Drive insight and intelligence into email marketing communications
  • Create a streamlined sign up experience using online forms

The Challenge

Parkinson’s UK manage over 200,000 email subscribers, ranging from those personally affected by the condition to fundraisers and event participants. They sought to derive insight and intelligence from their email marketing communications, yet different teams of end-users were juggling content across four ESPs with no central management, and unable to maintain consistency across each.

It was hard work, too. With no automated welcome or donation journeys in place, Parkinson’s UK’s email marketers were having to prepare each email manually – a time-consuming process which left little time for data analysis or optimization. Instead, the teams often had to resort to a ‘batch and blast’ approach with limited analysis, and were frustrated by their lack of resource to learn more about their audience demographic. It was largely assumed that most subscribers were older and therefore most likely to open on desktop, for instance, yet there was no data available to confirm or deny this.

The Solution

Parkinson’s UK made the move to Adestra as their single ESP platform, utilizing its multi-layered account structure to improve brand consistency across multiple teams.

The increased reporting functionality also brought with it some surprises: far from being desktop-bound, the Parkinson’s UK audience was in fact thoroughly engaged with modern technology – their mobile open rate was regularly hitting 70%! This added a new dimension to the team’s improvement plan: optimize for mobile by producing a series of mobile-responsive modular templates. There are now 10 different module options, which provide individual teams with enough scope for their creativity whilst still maintaining the same quality and palette across all brand communications.

Data capture forms were also implemented, with a view to managing personalized preferences and improving the quality of subscriber data across the board.

Automated customer journeys were also a must-have for Parkinson’s UK, and they set about creating the two most vital ones: an integrated donor journey linking to their new donation form, and a welcome program for new subscribers.



The mobile-optimized modular templates delivered great results: of 2,051 sends, they enjoyed a 45% open rate.

By far the greatest impact was achieved through the new automation programs. The donation journey performed extremely well: with 75% average open rate. Through testing, the marketing team gained insight into the best timing to ask for a further donation. Additionally, the amount of time saved by automating a previously manual process resulted in significant cost-efficiency during the busiest period of the year.


open rate


average open rate (donation journey)

What are they planning next?

Now that the Parkinson’s UK teams have reliable, user-friendly options for gathering data, they’re in an excellent position to make this newly-captured information work for them. With GDPR imminent, they’re also keen to implement a preference center as part of a broader re-permissioning to ensure client data is treated with privacy and respect.

And what about those all-important automation programs? Parkinson’s UK already have their sights on an upgrade campaign, which has recently launched, seeking to maintain engagement among regular donors. This will necessitate rigorous testing, optimization, and – you guessed it – a fully automated customer journey.