The 4 Challenges of Cause Marketing

Want to be my guest at the Cause Marketing Forum this May 30-31 in Chicago? The best comment wins a free registration worth $1,045.00 for a business or $795 for a nonprofit, compliments of Razoo (also cross-posted on Inspiring Generosity). A decision will be made tomorrow morning based on comments on both blogs. Customers want brands to invest in marketing, that much is clear. There’s enough data out there that shows that people love brands that invest in their community’s general well being (skip ahead if you want to see the stats). Yet brands struggle weaving cause marketing and corporate social responsibility programs into the fabric of their marketing communications. Some of the cause marketing problems facing corporate brands include: […]

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Free eGuide on Cause Marketing via Social Media

Zoetica teamed with Network for Good to co-author Cause Marketing through Social Media, a free eGuide (you can download it here). The twenty page guide covers five basic steps: The Basics Frame the Campaign Get People to Act Build on Momentum CSR In Times of Disaster There are many types of corporate-sponsored social good campaigns of all types. Companies deploy matching grant contests that ask participants to rally the most donations for their favorite causes. Some prefer crowdsourced voting contests that reward the most popular charities with corporate grants. And others offer campaigns that ask people to pledge volunteer time, acts of kindness or donation dollars to achieve a common goal. As the CSR movement evolves, companies will continue to […]

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Return Cause Marketing to the Heart of Your Strategy

So many organizations feel like they need bring causes into their marketing, and similarly, need to add social media to the mix. It’s a bit of a checklist game, and thus the quick drive to add a contest with online voting or simply create a cause purchasing campaign with a popular charity like Komen or a safe one like autism. What’s often missing is an understanding of how causes can positively impact a corporate strategy and culture. Whether it’s furthering technology issues, addressing some of the ills a product creates, or simply rewarding your employees or customers with an investment in a cause that they care about, a smart cause marketing effort can infuse a corporate brand with some well […]

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What Could Your Cause Do with a Full Page USA Today Ad?

Ironically, USA Today never asks that question in its #America Wants Twitterathon to give away a free full page ad valued at approximately $190,000. Perhaps worse, USA Today never asked itself how the newspaper can use a full age ad to help a charity that authentically reflects the newspaper’s mission. Instead we get another contest with no authenticity or theory of change. So what’s the impact? While it seems to be generating some tweets from charities, the overall impact will be debatable. From a marketing standpoint, the contest — based on responses to date — has generated a lackluster amount of response. So whether it’s the USA Today or its Kindness Community, in general I’d say this could be better. […]

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Cause Marketing Cynicism on the Rise

During SxSW, Beth Kanter, Kami Huyse and I posted our first team thought leadership piece, “Cause Marketing That Leads to Social Change.” It encompasses our 21st century view of CSR-based cause marketing initiatives in social environments (Image by Tom Fishburne). Key components include: Cause Washing Leads to Cynicism (need for authenticity) Leading with Social Outcomes (theory of change) Authenticity in Corporate Social Responsibility Contest Fatigue Sets In Empowering Stakeholders – Ensuring Change Use Social Tools to Immerse Stakeholders The post is really thick, and may take some time to digest. There are parts already discussed in minor form through smaller blog posts on our three blogs. One of the newer areas that I found to be important was cause washing. […]

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