Cause Marketing: Make $ and Help Somebody

One of the most exciting developments in American commerce that I’ve seen recently (although it’s been prevalent for years) is the emergence of cause marketing. To me, it truly reflects the greatest potential of our economic system and illustrates a heightened level of corporate responsibility, as well. It’s amazing what can be done when free enterprise and benevolence meet. Mickie Kennedy of Causewire explains that companies will spend about $1.61 billion on cause marketing this year — up over 6% from last year — and how it could help your business:

Associate your brand with a positive cause

Consumers respect cause-related marketing. It helps to humanize your company, showing your customers that you aren’t just concerned with turning the highest profit possible, but that you also want to help make a difference in the world. This breeds credibility, and it puts your company in a positive light with customers.

Associating your brand with a positive cause can also be useful for separating it from the competition. It’s a powerful differentiator that can actually motivate customers to do business with your company rather than one of your competitors.

Even your employees could become more loyal when you associate your brand with a positive cause. It allows them to feel like they’re doing more than just a job…that they’re actually working to make a difference.

Connect with consumers on a deeper level

Supporting causes your customers care about gives you something to bond with them over. It’s like you and the customer are working together to help make the world a better place. This allows you to create a much deeper relationship with the customer than you would just by being the typical company that interacts with them on standard purchases.

This new, deeper connection can be helpful in creating more loyal customers. It can also increase your visibility, allowing you to connect with customers who may not have even known you existed until you tied your brand to a cause they cared about.

Give your brand more stories to tell

Charitable contributions and cause-related marketing make for great press release topics. These press releases cut through the clutter of boring, self-indulgent press releases that reporters receive all day long. Everybody loves a feel-good story, and by helping raise awareness for a cause, you can generate more media coverage and positive publicity for your company and the cause you support. It’s a win-win.