Cause Marketing

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Introduction: Cause Marketing

Cause marketing refers to the strategy that aligns a company with a cause to generate business and societal benefits. Cause marketing is a potentially profiting initiative by a company or brand to raise awareness, money, and/or consumer engagement for a social or environmental issue.

Purpose: To raise money and awareness for a company and the cause thus increasing engagement with the company’s brand or product.

Three characteristics of Cause Marketing:
(1.)         A product, a tangible item that can be bought and sold
(2.)         A partnership between a company (for the product they are marketing) and a non-profit or cause based organization
(3.)         A way to generate a profit

Research shows that 3 out of every 5 consumers bought a product or service in the previous year because of its association with a cause. Cause marketing is increasing in popularity and many companies now use cause marketing as part of their marketing strategy.

Types of Cause Marketing include transactional, events, code/coupon redemption, pledge drives, consumer engagements, etc.

61% of Americans say they would be willing to try a new brand or one that is unfamiliar to them when it supports a cause.

The leading issues consumers think companies should address:
·       Equal rights/ Diversity
·       Crime / Violence
·       Homelessness / Housing
·       Environment / Disaster Relief
·       Access to clean water
·       Education Diversity
·       Hunger

·       Economic Development/ Health & Disease



 The Campaign for Real Beauty launched in September 2004 with a much talked-about ad campaign featuring real women whose appearances are outside the stereotypical norms of beauty. The ads asked viewers to judge the women’s looks (oversized or outstanding? and wrinkled or wonderful?), and invited them to cast their votes at Over the years, Dove has created variations of its original ads with one goal in mind, to empower women and broaden the definition of "real beauty".  

By owning an issue relevant to their customer base, Dove has created an authentic cause marketing campaign that resonates and creates an emotional connection with their customers

Dove Real Sketch Campaign: This campaign employed an FBI sketch artist who asked individual women to either describe themselves or a stranger seated next to them earlier in the day. The results showed very different images, revealing the women's insecurities int the portrait they described of themselves. The clip juxtaposed the two descriptions to highlight the distorted-- inaccurate and less attractive -- verbal pictures women painted of themselves.

The campaign empowers women to recognize their own beauty and not compare themselves to others, especially the traditional airbrushed and photo-shopped models. This is the “why” behind their brand—to empower women—and showing people why a company does what it does, not what it makes or how it makes it, is what causes us as consumers to stop and take notice.
In 2010, the campaign name was changed to The Dove Movement for Self Esteem.

- Vanessa
                    PROCTER & GAMBLE
Procter & Gamble Co., also known as P&G, is an American multinational consumer goods company. Renowned for its marketing focus on social issues, P&G has dedicated itself to the needs of society by providing people with goods and services for their health and well-being. In 2012, the company received the Cause Marketing Golden Halo Award, the highest honor for companies and causes that collaborate to produce business and social dividends. According to P&G’s global marketing and brand building officer Jim Stengel, the company’s thrust towards social responsibility is driven by a desire to change from “marketing to consumers to serving our consumers.”

P&G’s focus on ethical marketing aims to realize substantial gains by incorporating social issues into their advertising campaigns. In today’s rapidly evolving consumerist society, it is necessary for firms to positions themselves as corporate citizens in order to enhance their brand image. Cause marketing is a critical secondary factor for modern consumers – a company or brand that successfully positions a product at the right price will only be enhanced by a social responsibility or sustainability position. Moreover, P&G adheres to the values set of young and dynamic marketers. Values of the new generation revolve around a positive view on the global environment; hence, social responsibility is a very attractive proposition because it develops a great amount of motivational impact in both marketers and consumers.

At least eight P&G brands have active campaigns that publicize an array of environmental or philanthropic efforts. Each of these brands is now defined by a purpose that transcends its brand attributes. Here are some of the company’s most notable campaigns:

PUR Water Filters – P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program

Seeks to improve the health of children in less developed countries by providing them with clean drinking water

P&G’s Give Hope Campaign; in collaboration with The National Breast Cancer Foundation
Seeks to raise awareness concerning early detection in the fight against breast cancer

P&G’s “1 Pack = 1 Vaccine” Campaign; in collaboration with UNICEF’s Maternal and Neonatal Tetanus Elimination Program
Seeks to provide vaccinations in 47 countries to eradicate neonatal tetanus in poor countries

Tide’s Loads of Hope Program
Seeks to bring clothes to areas around the globe that have been affected by natural disasters
Dawn Dishwashing Liquid – Dawn Saves Wildlife Campaign
Seeks to rescue and release more than 75,000 animals affected by oil pollution


Everyone should be familiar with TOMS Shoes by now, unless you've been living under a rock. It’s a company that was established in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie. Mycoskie explained the meaning behind the name in an interview saying, "There is no TOM. We like to say that everyone is TOM, because what TOMS stands for, it's a derivative of the word 'tomorrow' and the idea that we have a better tomorrow. When we started the project, it was called the Shoes for Tomorrow Project. Then it was just Shoes for Tomorrow. Then that didn't fit on the label, so I just named it TOMS. You buy a pair today, we give a pair away tomorrow. And collectively, everyone who buys a pair, everyone who works here, everyone who's an intern, we all are TOMS. So that's who TOM is." Basically, like Mycoskie has mentioned, the company’s promise is: when TOMS sells a pair of shoes, then a pair of shoes will be given to an impoverished child. 

They have also branched out and started selling TOMS glasses and coffee (known as TOMS Roasting Co.) According to the official TOMS website, for every bag of coffee that's purchased, TOMS will give one week of clean water to a person in need. The same also goes for their eye-wear line. With each pair of glasses sold, people in the developing world, who have just as bad as vision as we do but little access to ophthalmologists, will get free glasses, medical treatment or surgery. Each product follow the company’s “One for One” business model. 

- Ashley


The Giving Keys originated from a simple idea that was not meant to become anything else. Caitlin Crosby, the founder, started off on this journey by simply collecting photos of your flaws. Those images went on to inspire her to write songs, which then led to her songwriting a whole album. From there, she went on to tour the country and found herself in New York City where she would simply use her necklace to keep her hotel key safe and would then venture on to ask a locksmith if he would be able to engrave inspiring words on this key. She then began selling these keys at her shows but found that they were being more successful than her actual albums. She went on to tie the message of the keys into her shows and encourage people to purchase a key that would symbolize their uniqueness and help them pay it forward. She could’ve created a website based on this simple following but she found herself longing for something more. She wanted to give back to a charity but did not know what to do exactly. After six months of waiting, Caitlin found her missing link on Hollywood Blvd. It was a homeless couple, Rob and Cera. Caitlin was drawn to them due to their sign and they went to dinner where she discovered that Cera loved to make jewelry. They started making necklaces the next day.

As business started to grow, The Giving Keys partnered with transitional homes in LA, such as United Way and PATH. These organizations had a screening process to ensure that those hired were serious about turning their lives around and settling down.

Today, The Giving Keys are retailed in over 500 stores both nationally and internationally including stores like: Anthropologie, Fred Segal, Henri Bendel and Kitson.
In March of 2013, The Giving Keys began partnering with Chrysalis to help find more employees. Chrysalis is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing homeless or low-income individuals with the resources and support they need to become self-sufficient and maintain a stable job. 

In June 2013, they were able to move to a larger location in the Los Angeles' neighborhood of Lincoln Heights where they are able to expand in general.

                                                                              - Sandy

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