Cause Marketing for Dummies - A Review

Cause Marketing for the Rest of Us

Cause Marketing for Dummies

Cause Marketing for Dummies, Joe Waters and Joanna MacDonald, Wiley, 2011.

You've seen them. The impossibly excellent cause marketing programs mounted by some of the biggest companies and the finest nonprofits. Cause marketing powerhouse programs such as (RED), Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and Share Our Strength are mouth watering, but also daunting for most nonprofits.

But Joe Waters and Joanna MacDonald, having cut their cause marketing teeth through years of grass roots experience, have produced a manual of cause marketing for the rest of us.

They know that each organization has to start somewhere and that there are lots of low-risk entry points for the group willing to learn and work hard.

What You Will Learn from Cause Marketing for Dummies

  • What cause marketing is and isn't. It isn't sponsorship, corporate philanthropy or social responsibility.
  • Why cause marketing is here to stay. For instance, cause marketing is a growth industry, expanding from a $120 million industry in 1990 to $1.62 billion in 2010. Plus consumers like it and want more, according to recent research; and modern technology, such as social media, the mobile web, location-based services, and quick response codes (QR), is leveling the playing field so that even small nonprofits can join the game at little cost.
  • What cause marketing can do for your nonprofit. It could be a new source of revenue from companies to your cause. It generates awareness of your cause. It can open new doors and expand your organization's knowledge base. It can help you reach new donors.
  • What cause marketing does for businesses. They earn a "halo" that boosts reputation and sales. Helps them target their key customers. It helps them attract and keep employees.
  • A menu of entry points for the inexperienced nonprofit, such as pin-up programs, point-of-sale campaigns, purchase and action-triggered donations, and digital programs, plus ten low budget cause marketing ideas.
  • How to get buy-in from your boss. Focus on benefits, not the features of your program, take baby steps and make sure your boss shares in the glory of success.
  • How to find good cause marketing partners -- companies with a heart. Use the circle strategy, starting with who you know and working outwards. Finding the best fit between business goals and your cause. Locating businesses with customers that have a natural connection with your cause.
  • How to sell your cause to the right business partner by leveraging your assets, being persuasive, and preparing winning proposals.
  • How to implement cause marketing programs, including point of sale, going online, succeeding with coin canisters, making the most of location-based services, how to use your existing events, setting up a percentage-of-sales program, and working with celebrities.
  • How to measure success and grow. Coping with failure, dealing with unhappy partners, resolving doubts and complaints, building beyond the basics.
  • How to avoid common pitfalls, such as making your program too complicated, expecting too much of your business partner, and thinking that cause marketing will solve all your problems.

Really, Cause Marketing for Dummies is a road map to getting started with cause marketing, and just about the best introduction to the field that I've seen.

The examples and case studies in this book are reason enough to invest in it.

Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher.