Cause Marketing’s Untapped Potential in Advertising

Jun 20, 2023 | Cause Marketing

When businesses give to a community or cause, there’s an opportunity to extend that investment beyond the positive PR and the obligatory financial requirements. In fact, there’s an entire segment of the industry underutilized and ready for an update – cause marketing advertising campaigns.

Sure, the concept of cause marketing is nothing new. Align a brand with a nonprofit that does good. Corporate volunteer days, sponsored galas and food drives were just the beginning. It’s expanded to company philosophies and mission statements that drive sourcing and hiring decisions and business operations. Maybe even a political endorsement.

The in between is where the opportunity lies. We can rethink how current traditional advertising budgets are spent – in digital, tv, radio and print – no matter the size of the footprint of the investment. How can that marketing message be more? How can it support a like-minded cause AND increase a company’s ROI? And here’s the thing, it won’t detract from your brand. If fact, it can help it. Here’s how:

1. Increased Sales and Revenue:

According to a study by Cone Communications and Echo Research, 91% of consumers worldwide are likely to switch brands to one associated with a good cause, given similar price and quality.

2. Greater Customer Loyalty and Engagement:

The 2020 Cone/Porter Novelli Purpose Biometrics Study revealed that purpose-driven ads are more likely to drive purchase intent, with an average increase of 7.3 percentage points.

3. Stronger Brand Reputation and Differentiation:

The 2020 Porter Novelli/Cone Purpose Biometrics Study found that consumers are 4.5 times more likely to purchase from purpose-driven brands and 4.7 times more likely to defend them.

4. Better Employee Engagement and Productivity:

A survey conducted by America’s Charities reported that 75% of employees are more likely to stay with a company that supports causes they care about.
A study by Project ROI found that companies with strong CSR programs experienced a 13% improvement in employee productivity.

First step? Narrow in on the cause:

  • Go Grassroots: Climate change, world peace and curing cancer can’t be done overnight. But there’s always work on the ground, in the community. Find the organizations that align with your core values and the core values of the people that use your service or buy your product.
  • Appeal to a Broader Audience: You can’t be everything to everyone but you can be authentic and relatable. Find a cause that your company can agree to get behind. Firefire prevention? Pet safety? Mental health support? Education resources?
  • Spread the Love: Connect with multiple community partners and multiple issues. Get your staff involved and find those connections.

What does one of these “campaigns” look like? The good news? You’re in the driver seat. You are investing the money. It can occur over a weekend or last a year. Work with your advertising partner to create something that works for you. Just don’t overcomplicate it.