Corporations have evolved to be enormously strong in recent decades, influencing every aspect of our lives. However, with power comes responsibility, and today’s customers are fully aware of corporate capability. They want their favorite businesses to be socially conscious and expect them to give something back to the community.

In a survey conducted globally, 87 percent of customers reported having purchased a product because a particular company stood for or advocated issues they care about.

74 percent of customers stated they would volunteer for a cause supported by a company they trust. Given the opportunity, 87 percent said they would buy a product with a social or environmental benefit, and 55 percent indicated they had done so in the previous year

People take pride in their responsible consumption. As a result, companies tie their values with a cause to increase conversions and assure customer loyalty and retention. In this challenging economy, when businesses must compete on more than price, this is a clear chance to promote a cause and be a force for good, while also making a profit.

Here is where we want to introduce you to cause marketing. If you’ve got no idea what that is, then this blog has you covered! Here, we aim to provide you with a basic awareness of cause marketing, its types, benefits, and the strategies you can use to apply it to your business. Ready to get started? Let’s go!


What is Cause Marketing?

Cause marketing is a type of campaign where a for-profit company and a non-profit organization collaborate for a common benefit. It advocates for a social cause while increasing profits. It may also refer to for-profit businesses’ social or charity efforts.

In most cases, a brand’s affiliation with a non-profit will increase its corporate social responsibility. In exchange for their ethical contributions to the partnership, the non-profit raises visibility and awareness for their organization.

Cause marketing is often a promotional effort that is not necessarily dependent on monetary aspects, as opposed to corporate giving or philanthropy, which is tax-deductible.

Corporations must learn to pivot their tactics as new ideals are introduced. Businesses that care about sustainability and ethics are at the top of consumers’ priority lists, and cause marketing helps bring a company’s social responsibilities to the attention of its customers.

But if we are talking about cause marketing, then we need to take a look at the different types of cause marketing campaigns that are being run by businesses! So let’s dive into that!


Types of Cause Marketing

1. Message-Centered Campaigns

A message-focused campaign is when corporate organizations increase awareness of a social subject or spread a social message through posters, writings, or media. It is dedicated to amplifying a message. Budweiser’s #FriendsAreWaiting advertising urged people not to drive after drinking. The campaign represented the company as having a clear stand and establishing its market reliability.


2. Cause-Related Marketing

This marketing strategy is based on the “you give us, we give them” approach. Cause-related marketing is similar to business donations. Cause-related marketing is when a company partners with a non-profit organization and gives 2% of its income to the cause.


3. Transactional Campaigns

Transactional campaigns are a type of cause marketing campaign in which a company’s donation to a cause is initiated by customer action. For example, to increase social media engagement, a company may offer to give one dollar for each post shared.


4. Non-Transactional Campaigns

Non-transactional campaign marketing is a type of cause marketing in which the support is not directly linked to customer action. A firm may fund events of a non-profit with which it is affiliated. A consumer action does not directly or indirectly make an effect on the association’s campaign.


5. Point-of-Sale Campaigns

A point-of-sale is the spot where clients pay for products and services, that is, the point where transactions take place after a purchase. At the checkout counter in shops, customers are frequently requested to contribute a little amount to charity. Customers on online platforms such as Swiggy are also asked to offer tips while placing orders. This contribution at the point of sale is an example of a point-of-sale campaign.


6. Volunteering

In this type of cause marketing, contributions need not necessarily be monetary. A firm may help a cause by inviting its workers to volunteer with a suitable non-profit.


7. Digital Engagement

In this case, corporations use a digital platform to increase exposure and cash for a non-profit’s aims. To combat hunger in the country, KFC India launched Plate of Hope, a digital cause marketing campaign. Customers who bought from KFC’s website may use an interactive online session to build a simulated plate of food. KFC fed a starving child for every virtual plate made on the website.

Now that you know several types of cause marketing campaigns, let’s go over the benefits of running such campaigns!


The Benefits of Cause-Related Marketing

Cause marketing raises the non-profit partner’s social recognition and visibility. As non-profits often have a limited marketing budget, partnering with a business can reach an otherwise unreachable audience. Increased awareness creates opportunities for communal change.

However, there are significant advantages for the business partner, other than fulfilling corporate social responsibility and improving the corporate image. Here are some ways that cause marketing may help your business and society:

1. Long-Term Influence on Sales

Supporting a cause has a profound psychological influence on consumers. Cause marketing adds a new selling factor to your products or services. Consumers are willing to pay more for cause-related items and services!


2. Increased Client Loyalty and Trust

Cause marketing fosters a sense of genuineness between you and your customers. People link your company with the happiness they receive from supporting a worthy cause. This fosters ongoing loyalty and confidence in your brand.

Furthermore, regular consumers who support the same causes will be more loyal to a company that stands up for what they believe in. They will undoubtedly support businesses that undertake measures to enhance essential elements of the environment and human life, such as sustainability, environmental conservation, inclusion, and most importantly, making their consumers feel visible and participating in these efforts.

Related: Customer Loyalty Program: What is it & What are the Benefits? [Examples]


3. Constant Support from Target Audience

Different groups of individuals will be interested in the campaign, depending on the cause you take up. For example, partnering with a nonprofit that works with animal shelters might bring in people who are interested in saving animals. Each issue or cause you support will attract various customers, so make sure you’re prepared for them and that they’ll be satisfied with what you provide.


4. Sets You Apart from Competition

We live in a very competitive market. It is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish your business from the crowd, and cause-related marketing may be precisely what you need. When a consumer is deciding between two identical items or services, the deciding factor is possibly a cheaper price or a supposedly superior product. And as social responsibility initiatives develop, more individuals are likely to prefer one product over another if it promotes a greater cause.

Now that you know the benefits of running a cause marketing campaign, let’s take a look at some of the cause marketing strategies that you need to follow!


How To Build an Effective Cause Marketing Campaign?

1. Decide on a Cause

The values of the company and the consumers should be represented in the cause’s marketing strategy. Marketing would appear more authentic if the cause is relevant to your brand.

For example, an American company called Billie, which sells razors and other body care products, initiated a campaign known as “Project Body Hair” to celebrate body hair in women. They brought attention to unreasonable beauty standards and demonstrated to the audience that their objective extends beyond the sale of razors.

Understanding the audience and designing a campaign around their principles can promote brand loyalty and also benefit the organization with which you collaborate. You could also decide on a cause that is universal and has different impacts on a variety of customers or potential customers.

Additionally, your cause marketing campaign is likely to succeed even more when the employees believe in the cause as well. This is because they are likely to put in extra effort to advocate and volunteer for the cause.


2. Plan the Contributions You Offer

Money isn’t always enough to persuade customers, and monetary offers might come across as deceptive or negligent. Furthermore, many small firms may not have enough financial resources. So companies may aid a cause in a variety of ways.

Some examples of these non-monetary contributions include product and service donations, organizing events or fundraisers for the nonprofit, or formulating concepts for advertising campaigns. You could even encourage employees to be volunteers from your company for their activities.

With the mass media and social media, there are infinite options such as photography and curation for their social media, copywriting or content creation, providing video services for charity organizations, supporting them through e-mail campaigns as well as in marketing the products.

All these would enable the creation of a solid link between your products and your company’s charitable services.


3. Pursue the Right Audience

Using customer relationship management (CRM) software may help you target a suitable group of people for your cause marketing while also generating awareness for your partner organization.

Getting your audience to feel being a part of the campaign can instil a feeling of responsibility in them since most individuals believe their actions can contribute to a real difference. Marketing strategies that affirm these beliefs can be an excellent way to increase the involvement of the crowd.

If you give them the opportunity, your audience can be major contributors to your cause marketing strategy. You may urge your customer base to involve in a variety of ways by utilizing social media or a custom-built webpage, for donating or fundraising to the cause and sharing your posts through social media to raise awareness.


4. Collaborate Effectively with the Non-Profit Partner

If you and your nonprofit partner both promote the campaign, it will most likely gain traction.

Some of the ways to do that are by tagging each other in social media posts, publicizing your partnership in a newsletter, and making a joint press release to media outlets. And most importantly, make sure you use each other’s logos while marketing.

Gaining the most out of your collaboration should be the primary factor in the marketing strategy you build with your nonprofit partner. To improve the exposure, it’s advisable to use omnichannel marketing tactics, tried and tested by some of the most successful cause marketing initiatives.

Omnichannel marketing methods refer to a strategy in which organizations advertise their products and services across all the different channels, devices, and platforms. It not only makes companies available across online and offline channels but also guarantees a smooth and holistic user experience.


5. Utilize a Variety of Media

The most effective cause marketing strategies will employ a variety of media and publicity platforms to boost the impact of the campaign.

Using posters, songs, articles, video promotions, smartphone games, and other interactive platforms for one campaign can reach out to a wider audience than it does by using a single medium such as social media or television ads.

Dumb Ways to Die, a Metro Trains safety campaign in Melbourne, was particularly effective in this regard. It started with a witty song and then progressed into using dolls, videos, and games.

Always remember to create catchy hashtags for social media, which will increase your reach on a variety of online platforms. Additionally, making use of automated marketing, i.e., using software for automating repetitive and monotonous work, would relieve your team from constantly updating and posting on social media and other forms of communication channels.


Wrap Up

Customers hold businesses responsible, and many opt to engage in corporate social responsibility efforts. Consumers now are more familiar with specific business practices than ever before, and they care where their money goes.

With cause marketing, businesses can align with their expectations in helping you make the world a better place by embracing corporate social responsibility.

If you’re not doing it, your competition definitely will. So, don’t fall behind in the movement, instead, jump on the bandwagon and try to be more socially responsible! Good luck!

Further Reads:

Customer Marketing: Definition, Benefits & Strategies!

Network Marketing: What is it & How Does It Work?

7 Principles of Marketing Every Business Must Follow! (The 7Ps)

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Content Marketing To Analyze Data!

Retention Marketing: Benefits,Channels & Strategies!