A few years ago, Proctor & Gamble launched a cause-related marketing campaign in South Africa. It was called “1 Pack=1 Vaccine,” and for every pack of diapers sold, a child was vaccinated against tetanus. It was wildly successful, boosting Pampers sales and resulting in 150 million vaccines.
A rival campaign didn’t fare so well. Its slogan was less tangible, not to mention wordy: “1 pack will help eradicate newborn tetanus globally.”
Be like P&G! Here are 3 reasons for tangible cause marketing messages.
We're closely monitoring the severe storms and tornadoes in Oklahoma and surrounding states. Companies have asked us how they can support relief efforts. Here are our recommendations:
Donate to one of the charities aiding Midwest disaster relief efforts. These include:
- The American Red Cross Central and Western Oklahoma Region Chapters within the region dispatched team members, opened three shelters, provided Mass Care, conducted bulk distribution and staffed local and state Emergency Operation Centers.
- Feeding America will deliver truckloads of food, water and supplies to impacted areas through its network of more than 200 food banks and 61,000 agencies. The organization's food banks will also set up additional dropoff sites.
- The Salvation Army of Arkansas and Oklahoma is becoming active in disaster response to several areas as a result of weather related events. The Salvation Army is providing mobile feeding units for first responders and survivors.
Social media for social good is growing. Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication and Waggener Edstrom Worldwide just released a new study that delves into the perceptions, behavior and motivations for cause support (locally and globally) among digitally engaged American adults.
Here are some of the most interesting findings:
Passion and pride drive people to post on causes: People who talk about causes online mostly (76%) do so to recruit others to their passion. Looking like a nice or smart person were distant seconds to the desire to influence others in general, but when it came to Facebook users (see bottom of this post), the desire to publicly display support of a cause came in first.
Conversations about causes are occurring primarily online, whether people choose to support the cause online or off. Social media is a go-to source of cause information, especially for global and faith-based causes. More than 8 in 10 respondents agreed that social media is effective in getting people talking about causes and issues. Animals and children topped the list of popular causes on social media (of course - puppies and babies win every time!).
It’s not surprising that Millennials like beer. Everyone likes beer. Okay, maybe not everyone, but many, many people enjoy a cold brew. Through their core business values, profit model, and internal organization, one company is drawing Millennials left and right: New Belgium Brewery.
Through a series of “happy accidents” Katie Wallace found herself at New Belgium. The employee-owned business embodies happiness itself. I had a chance to chat with Wallace about her work, and why the company operates the way it does. All quotations are from Ms. Wallace.
Started in co-founder Kim Jordan’s basement, the Brewery has always been a values-driven company. Not surprisingly, that attracts a certain type of employee: Explains Wallace, “We have a director of fun.”
Being human. Jordan’s background in social work and marketing has brought a human touch to a business that is all about people. For starters, she insisted on New Belgium being employee-owned, with an open-book management policy.
“Honoring our humanness – we’re not machines – unlocks this amazing power in the business, making us more profitable and successful in the long run.”
You can read our COO/CSO Katya Andresen’s take on this data here.
Here’s a headline I like reading: Consumers Care about Buying from Socially Responsible Brands Now More Than Ever. It’s some good news from my favorite print magazine, Fast Company.
Good.Must.Grow., a socially responsible marketing company, recently conducted a poll of 1,015 Americans around conscious consumerism, and the results are encouraging. In 2011, 18% reported buying from socially responsible companies. In 2012, that number jumped to 30% saying they plan to purchase more goods from these companies.
What’s perhaps most interesting is that while 31% said they sought out socially responsible companies, 25% said they “avoided buying products from a company specifically because it wasn’t socially responsible”.
Research shows that, above all, emotion is what galvanizes people to act.
People support causes because they feel something, not because they think something. In fact, if you make people stop and think, they tend to do less good. So what does research about emotion and giving mean to the cause marketer?
Today, we release a brand new eGuide - The Brainiac's Guide to Cause Marketing by our own COO and CSO Katya Andresen - that explores how people’s minds really work, and what that means for your next campaign. By understanding how people think, you'll learn how to make them act.
Soon-to-be college graduates Nikhil Arora and Alejandro Velez learned how gourmet mushrooms could be grown out of recycled coffee grounds. The idea – intriguing if nothing else – made them think: Should they forgo stable careers in the banking world for innovative entrepreneurship in the…mushroom world?
As you might have guessed, the answer is yes.
If you can believe it, initial interest from Whole Foods and Chez Panisse, along with a grant from their university, gave them the courage to create Back to the Roots—turning Arora and Velez into “full time urban mushroom farmers”.
Their mission is simple: To make food personal again through the passionate development of tools that educate and inspire, one family at a time.
As are their values: Hustle. Passion. Family. Universal Happiness.
Sodexo is a massive global quality of life services company, reaching 75 million people on a daily basis. In spite of its size, Sodexo is committed to the local communities it touches, keeping its 425,000 employees engaged, communicating those core CSR values, and giving back.
I was able to learn more about how such a big company communicates its CSR values, through an interview with Neil Barrett, Sodexo’s Group VP of Sustainable Development. All italicized text is that of Mr. Barrett’s.
Sodexo’s Better Tomorrow Plan is structured around four pillars and sets out 18 defined commitments.
This structure governs who we are, what we do and how we engage with our clients, consumers, suppliers, and communities, in fact all of our stakeholders in order to be a responsible company.
But that is a lot of initiatives to remember, so in order to share them with the general public, we looked for common themes and came up with those four communications priorities, based on what our research said people cared about most...
The four macro themes of Sodexo’s CSR communications are:
1) A responsible employer: Our commitments as an employer talk about who we are as a company, with our commitments to diversity and inclusion, health and safety, human rights and developing our employees.
Sodexo is a global quality of life services company, reaching 75 million people on a daily basis. In spite of its size, Sodexo is committed to the local communities it touches and keeping its nearly half a million employees engaged in its mission and values..
Through an interview with Neil Barrett, Sodexo’s Group VP of Sustainable Development, I was able to learn more about how such a big company can be so personal. All italicized text is that of Mr. Barrett’s.
On being a local, global company:
The importance of being local, and recognizing the local impacts we have, is essential to our business. We have operations on 34,000 sites, ranging from one or two people to teams with several hundred employees. Those employees, 97 percent of whom are from the community in which they are working, are our direct connection to that community. The lives they touch every day – at work and during their non-working hours are in their local community.
There’s a recent HBR post entitled What the Marketing Agency of the Future Will Do Differently that’s worth a read for anyone interested in marketing professionally and/or considering marketing services.
Mitch Joel outlines five ways agencies can and should adapt to the content-is-king, consumer-is-queen age. We found three of these to be particularly relevant to cause marketers.
1) Leanness. Joel explores why this concept is critical to a nimble marketing. Having the ability to create campaigns in-house, and tweak and optimize messaging/content throughout, is key to successful cause marketing.
The marketing team (brand + agency staff) must be nimble and responsive to the market and new opportunities. While cause marketing might not be that nimble (yet), some brand marketers are moving in that direction already. When the power went out for 34 minutes at the Super Bowl earlier this year, Oreo responded via social media with “Power Out? No problem” accompanied by the image of a solitary Oreo and the caption “You can still dunk in the dark.” That type of response is not possible if marketing messages have to go through multiple levels of approval before they see the light of day (so to speak).