Cause related marketing getting bigger, better
Said officially, it is a marketing tool used to help address the social issues of the day, through providing resources and funding, whilst at the same time addressing important business objectives.
In effect it is marketing that matters and that is where I want to spend my time doing what I love, creating über exposure for brands that want to make a difference while doing what they do best. All brands shout that they are doing it to get you to buy their product and aid their cause relations, but how many are really doing it? It is what we as consumers really want to see and hear these days. If a marketing campaign is linked to a worthy cause, over 80% of people are more likely to buy into the idea compared to a branded product that is not linked to one.
Closing the full circle
Consumers see it as their hard earned consumer sales cash somehow and somewhere going back into the world and communities that need it, therefore closing the full circle from brand product to consumer to brand, to then a percentage of profits going back into real causes relating to marketing of brands in a sustainable supportive way. This often makes consumers feel like they are making a difference and we all know how good we feel when we do that for society, and subconsciously ourselves.
Innovation in marketing is developing better solutions and methods of conducting business in a fun and often cool way. Having a history of innovation helps companies stay ahead of the competition. Innovative brands these days are placing great focus and providing heavy man power to take advantage of these new opportunities - identifying changes in the ever-changing business landscape, using powerful fresh market research information, and putting their money where their mouths are.
Using cause related marketing effectively
One global brand that is most certainly at the top of this list is Coca-Cola. It is very much in tune with its consumers and is constantly creating innovative ways in which to engage with its consumers through marketing that matters and products that best satisfy consumer requirements. The development of its current Marketing that Matters platform is Coca-Cola RockCorps. It epitomises these marketing objectives and provides great insight on how to use cause related marketing effectively.
Coke "shares happiness" in the music space which is related to an important cause - teenage volunteering. In this way, the brand typifies the innovation process of adding more value to a product in a socially desirable way. This type of cause related marketing is central to Coke's marketing strategies - to give consumers the benefits they want.
Coca-Cola RockCorps, in partnership with ABI, encourages teens to live an active lifestyle through volunteering, giving four hours of their time to help uplift their very own local community and in return, earning a ticket to a music concert that money can't buy.
The win-win-win situation
When cause related marketing works well, everyone wins - the company, the cause and the consumer. In business terms, this is known as a win-win-win situation.
Every brand worth their weight in the world today is looking for the right cause to link their marketing to, watch this space as it is only getting bigger and better with more value for all.
About Matthew Karpinski
Matthew Karpinski is the Managing Director at RockCorps South Africa.