No, I don't think the mere submission of an appeal is going to impress.
By the way, it's the appeal panel, not the school, that needs impressing!
I'll add a little to Etienne's comment... Just submitting an appeal has no bearing on the waiting list, so you won't jump up a few places because you've appealed. Any waiting list is still in place until the appeals start, and in some areas there is still a little shuffling around. We get appeals withdrawn sometimes because the child has been offered a place as they'd got to the top of the waiting list.
After the appeals, any waiting list is still there, but it moves a lot slower - especially if the school has had to admit more than their Published Admissions Number (PAN) because more appeals were allowed than there were places.
Etienne is certainly correct when she says it's the Appeals Panel that needs impressing - so if you don't try an appeal, you can't win an appeal! Make sure that the school knows you want to be on the waiting list though, irrespective of what you decide to do with the appeal.
As for non-selectives, yes, there are lots of appeals for them, they just don't have the non-qualification element that a selective has.