Is Cause Marketing the New Norm?

How Linking a Cause Can Help Validate Your Brand

Today’s marketing landscape is filled with buzz words, like Social Influencer, Vlogging, Content Marketing, and, well you get the idea. While you may not have a clue what a Social Influencer is, there is one term every entrepreneur should get to know and that is, Cause Marketing.

But what exactly is cause marketing and how can it affect your business success?

What Consumers Think

Having a great product or cleaver brand is no longer enough to capture today’s savvy consumer. They are looking for businesses that are incorporating strong social responsibility into their business models. cause marketing is just that, a dedication to giving back to the community by supporting an important cause.

According to a recent Cone Cause Evolution Study, 87% of consumers said they would switch from one brand to another if the other brand showed some type of affiliation with an important and relevant cause. They key point here is ‘relevant cause’. Consumers don’t just want to do business with a company that supports a non-profit, they want to support one that recognizes causes that are related to the products they sell.

Giving Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank

As an entrepreneur you are probably wondering how you balance building your business with giving away profits right out of the gates, right? This is part of what makes cause marketing so successful, you don’t have to give up the farm to make a difference! While most non-profits love to receive monetary donations, and in fact need them in order to operate, they also need volunteer time, and in-kind donations.

Remember, the success of any campaign is one that is a win-win for all parties involved. So, keep these steps in mind when setting up a cause marketing campaign for your business:

Step 1. Find a cause that you and your team believe in. It is much easier to sacrifice profit or time if you believe in what you are doing.

Step 2. Make sure that the cause you select is relatable. It must be something that your target audience will connect to and that relates to your products or brand.

Step 3. Establish an open and active dialogue with the cause you are supporting. Let them know who you are and why you want to support them, and then work with them on joint campaign opportunities.

Step 4. Remember that giving doesn’t just mean writing a check to your cause of choice. By establishing a relationship first, you can other ways to help the organization that will also show your customers that you and your team truly believe in giving back. Start small, and then grow your give-back as your company grows. This creates not only a great success story, but an incentive for consumers to select your brand over another.

Step 5. Finally, establish a strong marketing campaign and plan to promote your social responsibility. The most successful ones aren’t built around simply showcasing that you give back but instead demonstrate to your audience base that this is part of the culture within your company.  

By incorporating a solid cause marketing strategy into your Marketing Plan, you will build a business model and culture that measures success not just on sales and profits, but on making a difference, and that is what consumers are looking for!

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