Given the proliferation of cause-related marketing campaigns (also referred to as “embedded giving”) and the resulting media coverage, it is no surprise that Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey is introducing federal legislation that will require companies to inform consumers how their money is being used, as well as to notify nonprofits that their names are being associated with the campaign.
An article in the New York Times this week took a critical look at “embedded giving,” or a form of what we call cause marketing. It discusses how nonprofit experts are increasingly wary of the practice of embedding donations into product purchases because such giving is often quite vague and difficult to regulate.
Today, more than ever before, it is important for nonprofits to stand out among their peers. Like their corporate counterparts seeking to compete in the marketplace, nonprofits are increasingly looking to build their brands.
As we approach the close of the year and look to what’s in store for in 2008, a mega trend that will continue to permeate the cause space is the move from transactional relationships to true partnerships.
We're excited to share some recent accolades Cone and our clients have received:
The millions of toys recalled this year due to lead and other hazards continue to have a long tail. While the toys may have been cleared from store shelves, they are still showing up in the donation boxes of charities across the country.
I am a huge fan of Dove's Campaign for Real Beauty. I find it refreshing that the campaign is meant to challenge stereotypes, "to celebrate the diverse, the healthy, the real, the truly beautiful."
According to this year’s Cone Holiday Trend Tracker, most Americans (71 percent) are motivated to purchase cause-related gifts this season because they want to introduce a cause they care about to others.
I returned last week from the Institute for International Research “Future Trends” conference in Miami with a welcome message for this holiday season – the more you give, the more you get.
It will come as no surprise to corporate executives that “cause” has gone mainstream. We have seen evidence of this recently in our 2007 Cone Cause Evolution Survey, where a shocking 30 percent drop in “word of mouth communications about a product or company after hearing about a company's commitment to social issues” was reported.
Last week, Alison DaSilva and I attended in Louisville, KY an internal meeting of Athletes for Hope, a seven-month old nonprofit focused on assisting professional athletes with their charitable endeavors.
Environmental news continues to dominate the media and marketplace—just this week, the Wall Street Journal issued its “Consumer’s Guide to Going Green,” the nation’s largest institutional investors sent a letter to Congress urging passage of a national energy bill, Wal-Mart issued its first environmental report and major retailer Kohl’s announced it will pursue LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for every store opening in 2008. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
I cannot tell you how many times I am asked for statistics to support the business case for cause and corporate responsibility, outside of our own.
Doesn’t a long-lasting, low-cost, anti-malarial bed net that can be manufactured AND sold in Africa seem like a good idea?
There is more proof that the hormone Oxytocin is an important factor in social behavior - and more specifically, giving.
While I appreciate and respect the intent of NBC’s “ Green is Universal” program, it has been causing significant backlash as viewers question the eco-authenticity of the commitment. Most people don’t know that NBC’s parent company, General Electric, is one of the nation’s most committed corporate environmental leaders. NBC and its affiliates should have considered how to better communicate their own environmental practices and the most credible venues to educate the masses.
This week Wall Street Journal MarketWatch commentator Herb Greenberg delivered interesting commentary on how corporate philanthropy often reflects that a company has strong cash flow and overall positive financial performance. He likens philanthropy to paying dividends: it sends a positive message to investors not only that the company has cash on hand, but that the company is a good corporate citizen.
Two decades ago, the solution for alleviating poverty went something like this: food, clothing and shelter. It was about handing out immediate needs. The rhetoric then changed to handing out basic tools for impoverished people to grow food, to fish and to sew. But change agents began to look for even longer term solutions. The food-clothing-and shelter solution then turned into something like this: skills, access and literacy.
A strategic Cause Branding program can help an organization enhance its brand equity, increase relevancy to key stakeholders and develop a sustainable competitive advantage. The following are tips for developing authentic and substantive programs: