Cause marketing gives the consumer more choices about where a company’s money might be allocated through nominating a cause while on that company’s website or social media page. The company benefits through increased customer interaction and informing their customers of the good work they are doing. The non-profit organization benefits from the involvement also. It also gives both organizations further credibility.
One of the most exciting aspects of marketing is seeing the changes it can accomplish for a business or organization. In inducing goods or services to the public, typically both find some benefit. The consumer fills a need, and the provider makes a profit. Those involved in marketing are tasked with aiding a providing business entity build a reputation before the public. For many years cause marketing has helped businesses gain a strong customer base through social and charitable associations. Most of these associations were for physical goods. Through the use of online media cause marketing allows customers to take a more active role in a worthwhile cause.
Democratized Transactional Giving
Democratized transaction giving is considered a form of corporate philanthropy, but the reality is it’s also a method of seeing very fast gains from marketing both in the form of profit, and reputation. In itself it is a form of credibility marketing. Here, a for-profit entity will join with a nonprofit organization to promote a specific cause. Typically, while this is still a participatory cause marketing endeavor, this gives customers a chance to promote their cause while developing a loyalty to a brand. Using online options it’s possible to allow the person making a purchase to use an option for donation. From the company’s website the customer can choose from a drop down list of donations, or use points from a purchase to a charity of choice. Those making a purchase can also be given the chance to send an acknowledgement of a donation to a social media site, gaining further credibility for the company.
Incorporating Social Media and Cause Marketing
During any kind of marketing the best scenario is to have engagement between the provider and the consumer. This type of cause marketing goes a step beyond, as it links the company or brand with the consumer, and to a larger community group. Some larger corporations such as Amazon.com took steps to ensure that those who donated the most through the purchase of the company’s products received recognition. This brings a campaign full circle back to those who took part, and to the cause itself.
The individual who takes up a cause, such as a relief fund for disaster survivors, or in hopes to raise funds for the research of a deadly disease can feel overwhelmed. In looking at the need around them, many people naturally feel they are faced with a Herculean task. What the public sees with cause marketing is the ability to join forces with a larger entity or group. The promotion itself, in part, tackles the aspects of drawing attention to the cause. This links the business or brand with these members of the public in a common cause. This organized and publicized effort will see a more concentrated and focused effort on behalf of a specific issue affecting a group of people. It shouldn’t be overlooked in cause marketing that such efforts often have a dramatic effect in improving the support given to organizations or groups in need of assistance. Efforts that once might have seemed impossible are made possible through the alliance of businesses and those individuals who buy their products.
Darrell Berg-Smith, CEO and founder of The Asian Regional Impact Initiative is a professional speaker, author, consultant and social entrepreneur who specializes in advising on Cause Related Marketing programs and Corporate Social Responsibility to NGOs and companies worldwide.
Darrell is also the founder of the Doctors For Cambodia Initiative, http://asianregionalimpactinitiative.org/doctors-for-cambodia which provides scholarships and support funding to medical students through cause marketing mentors with medical professionals worldwide.
He is also the founder of The Asian Regional Cancer Initiative working to upgrade the level of cancer education, prevention and treatment in Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia. These initiatives maintain their sustainability by arranging cause marketing campaigns with doctors, dentists, and other medical professionals worldwide.