Cause marketing is one way for businesses and non-profit organizations to partner with each other to create value, generate revenue and increase visibility.
Here’s a real life example.
In November we leased a Subaru Legacy. We love it! Great car. Great lease price. Meets all our needs and those of our new dog. In our search for a new vehicle Mel spent months test driving cars and negotiating lease prices. We found the Legacy by chance. We drove by a Subaru dealership on our way to the movies and saw a Legacy out front with a sign that said $199/month.
Well that’s a great price. And Mel said it’s top rated by Car & Driver magazine. We were sold. But we got more than we bargained for. The dealer told us that with our lease Subaru would give $250 to a non-profit of our choosing.
It turns out that Subaru was running a cause marketing campaign. They had selected five non-profits that are aligned with the values of their customers. A niche marketer, Subaru knows that its customers have active lifestyles, are technologically sophisticated, and champion environmental issues and education. In fact, Subaru is the official vehicle of more than 20 non-profit outdoor and professional organizations. Subaru knows who buys their cars and they created a marketing campaign that addressed the desire of Subaru owners to help worthy causes.
The five charities selected were Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Habitat for Humanity International, Meals on Wheels Association of America, National Wildlife Federation and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Subaru gave $4,686,750 to these organizations. Checks were presented on February 12th at the Chicago Auto Show. Subaru gave away over $4.5 million and yet it was in the black financially while Ford, General Motors, Chrysler and even Toyota and Honda finished in the red.
As another example of how well this program was run we received a letter from Meals on Wheels Association of America thanking us for designating their organization when we bought our car. In their letter they clearly communicated how important local Meals on Wheels programs are to individual seniors and how the Meals on Wheels Association of America is important to local Meals on Wheel programs.
We leased a car. Subaru increased its revenue. Seniors across America are receiving meals delivered to their doors. Cause marketing at its best.
Copyright 2009 – Mel and Pearl Shaw