Cause Marketing And Brand Activations

Posted on Jul 20 2013 - 4:37pm by Fayaz

Does your work actually make a difference to anyone? Does your job profile include bringing a smile back to a face that has been long lost in this #world? Does your campaign possess a Cause that has the power to bring about a Change apart from Brand Recall and Sales Figures? Do your brand activations actually connect at the ground level with your Consumer’s emotions?

These are exactly the same questions that arise in the mind of a Cause Marketer. About contributing and adding towards building positive human relations.

The term ‘Cause Marketing’ was first coined by American Express in 1983 for the Statue of Liberty Restoration Project. The 3 month campaign raised close to $ 2 million and the American Express card use rose 27%.

India has seen significant Brand Activations in recent past through Cause related campaigns. Aircel’s ‘Save our Tiger’ where you could donate funds for WWF Campaigns or Tata Tea’s ‘Jaago Re’ in which it was estimated that 6.5 Lakh Indians used the platform to register as voters thereby creating a widespread social awakening.

I Lead India

On similar lines is the ongoing campaign of ‘I LEAD INDIA’ a Times of India initiative in association with Maruti Suzuki is an activist programme. It seeks to mobilise the youth in the 18-24 age group and make them agents of change at the grass-root level.

The cause here is to make a difference in the society by being the change in the society and stop pointing fingers.

Cause Marketing Cause marketing

Source: Edelman Research Report

The consumer psychology about Cause marketing is well brought out by insights that the Edelman Research Report has captured.  82% respondents believe that supporting a good cause makes them feel better about themselves and nearly 50% said that ‘Social Cause’ ranks higher than ‘Brand Loyalty’, ‘Design’ and ‘Innovation’ as a Purchase Motivator.

Coca Cola a brand that resonates with happiness is actively engaged in Cause Marketing. The brand came up with its campaign-Happiness without Borders. It invited the people of India and Pakistan- used to living in conflict-to share a simple moment of connection and joy through its Hi-Tech Vending Machines. The vending machines aptly called as the ‘Small world Machines’ brought together human emotions by displaying real time action and initiating joyful interaction

Brand Activations form an important part of this Cause Marketing in bringing the consumers emotions directly in touch with the Goodwill of the brand.

Think Blue Campaign

European passenger car manufacturer Volkswagen in association with the Ministry of Tourism launched the ‘Think Blue’ Campaign. The objective of the campaign was to persistently put a conscious effort towards a cleaner and a more sustainable environment not only for ourselves but our future generations as well. The campaign included launching Think Blue pages on Facebook giving helpful sustainability tips and an Iphone game where in players have to cover the most ground using as little fuel as possible.

Red Campaign

Another significant Campaign for which multiple brands came together for a brilliant cause is the RED campaign-Fighting Aids in Africa. By the time we wake up tomorrow, another 5500 men, women and children would have died in Africa due to Aids. They die because they cannot afford treatment costs of 60 cents a day. The Cause and the Goal is to have an Aids free Generation by 2015.

 

Partners supporting the Red Campaign are Apple, SAP, Beats by Dr. Dre and Starbucks to name a few.

A Simple Brand Activation program done by Starbucks where it used the technology to establish the relationship between the Cause, consumers and the brand has won laurels.

Star bucks

For 10 days, Starbucks contributed $1 on every Check-In at Starbucks stores in the US & Canada – up to $250,000 – and they hit their goal 2 days early!! $250,000 raised in 8 days!

That is the power a Cause, a Brand and its Loyalty can create to prove that humanity continues to thrive in our hearts. It is that part of Marketing which has its heart in the Consumers but the heartbeats remain with the recipients of the Cause. We as Cause driven Marketers are as simple a connection as the blood that flows into these hearts.

For 10 days, Starbucks contributed $1 on every Check-In at Starbucks stores in the US & Canada – up to $250,000 – and they hit their goal 2 days early!! $250,000 raised in 8 days!

That is the power a Cause, a Brand and its Loyalty can create to prove that humanity continues to thrive in our hearts. It is that part of Marketing which has its heart in the Consumers but the heartbeats remain with the recipients of the Cause. We as Cause driven Marketers are as simple a connection as the blood that flows into these hearts.

The article is authored by Richard Manickam from SIES college of Management Studies, Mumbai.

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About the Author

Fayaz is the founder of Marketing Bloggers. Apart from the jibber-jabber he is Human by birth, Engineer by mistake, Marketer by Choice.. That says it all :)

1 Comment so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Abishek December 16, 2013 at 9:47 am -

    Cause marketing is being adopted by many brands nowadays for mass reach.. and associating itself with social causes.. Tata was the first one though

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