Category Archives: Branding

More Than Three-Quarters of American Say a Nonprofit-Corporate Partnership Makes a Cause Stand Out

Sixty-one percent are actively seeking partnership details before supporting the cause, but only 45 percent think organizations disclose enough information.

BOSTON (March 10, 2010) – More than three-quarters (78%) of Americans believe a partnership between a nonprofit and a company they trust makes a cause stand out, according to the newly released 2010 Cone Nonprofit Marketing Trend Tracker.

When the cause breaks through, consumers are more likely to feel positively about the nonprofit (56%) and actively support it. As a result of nonprofit-corporate partnerships:

·         59% of Americans are more likely to buy a product associated with the partnership;

·         50% are more likely to donate to the nonprofit;

·         49% are more likely to participate in an event for the nonprofit; and

·         41% are more likely to volunteer for the nonprofit.

Other nonprofit marketing elements that help capture consumer attention include having an association with a special event or time period (81%); a memorable color, logo or icon that symbolizes the cause or issue (79%) and the involvement of a celebrity or other notable spokesperson (61%).

“Leading nonprofits are transforming their missions into breakthrough cause brands by harnessing the power of corporate partnerships to rally new supporters with a compelling call-to-action,” explains Alison DaSilva, Cone’s executive vice president of Cause Branding. “While we have seen many companies reap the benefits of cause-related partnerships, these results reveal the same benefits hold true for the nonprofit brand. Strategic corporate partnerships can help nonprofits stand out and create new, loyal ambassadors.”

Give Consumers Details

American consumers are highly attuned to nonprofit-corporate partnerships in the marketplace today. Nearly two-thirds (61%) are actively seeking partnership details before deciding to advocate for or donate to the cause. And they want to see results – 75 percent want to hear about the results of partnerships, including the effect on the social issue or money raised for the cause. In light of this penchant for detail, fewer than half (45%) think nonprofits and companies disclose enough information about their partnerships.

Don’t Ignore Traditional Channels

New media have emerged as powerful channels to reach and engage consumers around social and environmental issues and causes, but the Trend Tracker results reveal conventional channels, such as traditional media, advertising and events, still resonate. Americans indicate the following are effective ways for nonprofit organizations to reach them with a message or call-to-action:

·         81% by word-of-mouth from family or friends

·         80% through traditional media (e.g., newspapers, magazines, television)

·         74% in advertising

·         69% at events

·         66% in the store, on a package or at the register

·         64% through standard mail

·         59% through e-mail

·         49% through social media channels (e.g., Facebook, blogs, YouTube, Twitter)

·         29% on mobile devices (via text messaging)

About the survey:

The 2010 Cone Nonprofit Trend Tracker presents the findings of an online survey conducted February 11-12, 2010 by Opinion Research Corporation among a representative U.S. sample of 1,055 adults comprising 510 men and 545 women 18 years of age and older. The margin of error associated with a sample of this size is ± 3%.

About Cone:

Cone ( is a strategy and communications agency engaged in building brand trust. Cone creates stakeholder loyalty and long-term relationships through the development and execution of Cause Branding, Brand Marketing, Nonprofit Marketing, Corporate Responsibility and Crisis Prevention and Management initiatives. Cone is a part of the Omnicom Group (NYSE: OMC) (


Choosing A Celebrity to Go Social for Your Brand

Posted by Marcy Walsh, from the TheLivingstonBuzz.

Last week, Justin Bieber, the 16 year old Canadian singer who has adolescent girls and their mothers in hysteria worldwide, tweeted about his experience on Air New Zealand, our client. More than 600 people retweeted his tweet, according to Twitter Search. And likely more than 100,000 people received the message that Air New Zealand is a great airline to fly. Rob Fyfe, Air New Zealand CEO, responded to the tweet, and the conversation was heard around the world.

Named Airline of the Year, Air New Zealand’s excellent customer service, not endorsement fees, gets the credit for this gift that keeps on giving. But there’s no question that celebrities can raise the profile of your brand rapidly in social circles.

A celebrity certainly can raise your brand’s profile positively or negatively (Celebrity Endorsement Hits and Misses is a good primer) very quickly in all mediums. But with social communities, the ability to connect to your brand through a celebrity on a more personal level provides great opportunities. Last year, for example, Shaquille O’Neal announced via Twitter his endorsement deal with Enlyten, an electrolyte strip brand. Instantly he started a conversation about the brand with 2+ million fans and followers who wanted to hear what he had to say.

To read tips for wisely choosing a celebrity (or not) to represent your brand in social circles visit The Buzz Bin.

‘Cause-nitive Dissonance,’ Bad Postioning or Both in KFC Cause Marketing Campaign?

posted by Paul Jones,

Through May 9, 2010 each bucket of specially-marked KFC chicken sold generates a $.50 donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The KFC bucket also invites you to visit to make an additional donation.

As the website URL suggests, the campaign sports the unwieldy name of ‘Buckets for the Cure.”The redoubtable Scotty Henderson, and many others, have raised the issue of “cause-nitive dissonance,’ to coin a term.

That is whether fried food should be supporting breast cancer research, since research has shown obesity be a risk-factor for breast cancer and since fried chicken is high in fat. Many, many others, including the Wall Street Journal, have weighed in.

Read more

Connect with Current Events for Nonprofit Marketing Success — Earth Day 2010

By Nancy Schwartz on Getting Attention

Leveraging a news item or holiday by connecting your org to its theme is a tried-and-true nonprofit media relations strategy that succeeds at little cost. (See PETA case study).

But there’s more than media coverage to be gained in connecting your organization’s issues with a major news event or holiday. Doing so links your org to what’s already in your supporters’ minds — like this year’s 40th anniversary of Earth Day — so works well to motivate them to give or sign a petition.

Here are just a few of the many strong models of nonprofit marketing campaigns around Earth Day 2010 (via my colleagues active on the Progressive Exchange list serv. Please join us.):

  • The Media & Policy Center’s “Growing Greener Schools” will air on PBS throughout Earth Day week (check local listings).  It’s supported by a terrific new network of green school activists and initiatives, and the community building is reinforced by an e-newsletter.
  • The Green for Life video series was launched by the United Methodist Church and an action alert of Six Things You Can Do this Earth Day shared by United Methodist Women.
  • The Nature Conservancy is organizing action around itsEarth Day To-Do List and needs just 110 more signatures via Facebook to reach its goal for its “Be Part of the Solution” petition. Sign it now.

More great Earth Day-related nonprofit fundraising and marketing campaigns here.

Learn more by reviewing these examples of organizations connecting with a news event for nonprofit communications success, and one of a for-profit doing so and treading on youropportunity:

Please share your organization’s strategies for leveraging news events to boost your nonprofit communications in the comments box below at bottom or via email. Thanks much!

P. S. Get more in-depth articles, case studies and tools for nonprofit marketing success — all featured in the twice-monthly Getting Attention e-update. Subscribe today.

Nancy E. Schwartz helps nonprofits succeed through effective marketing and communications.  Nancy and her team provide marketing planning and implementation services to nonprofit organizations and foundations nationwide.

She is the publisher of the Getting Attention e-update and blog. Subscribe here to learn how to improve your nonprofit marketing impact:

Socialbrite Chats With The Founders of Eventbrite

By Heidi Genrich

Eventbrite, an online ticketing service for events, recently announced Eventbrite For Causes – offering discounted transaction fees to nonprofits organizations.If you aren’t already familiar with the service, Eventbrite makes setting up online ticket sales very simple. Eventbrite even integrates with Facebook, allowing you to additionally create and publish a Facebook event from within their interface. Socialbrite interviewed  EventBrite’s co-founders, Julia and Kevin Hartz, on the importance of events in for raising  your brand profile and money. Julia Hartz explained that they are eager to develop a service that works for nonprofits:

We’re really excited about hearing from nonprofits. So what we’ll be doing in the next coming months is really reaching out to nonprofits that use Eventbrite to hear from them what they would most like from us. And that’s really in line with who we are. We built Eventbrite around the customer pain points and having a direct, open, and transparent dialogue with our customers. So, we find it only natural to us to be able to apply those same principles to the non-profit organizations because we know that they have specific pain points that we’re not even privy to, and that we’re not experts on. So we’re not trying to be the expert. We’re actually really looking for feedback and open dialogue so that we can build not only in our product the features they need, but also create a really fruitful and productive community.

Check out the full interview.

Youth Marketing: Don’t Be A Poser

Nancy Lubin, the CEO of, gave an insightful interview to mobileYouth on how she has so successfully reaches the younger demographic online.  She advises that organizations be authentic (as opposed to “cool”) and fully understand the diversity within the youth market. Check it out:

Read the full article at mobileYouth.

Happy Friday!

Crowdsourcing Social Change

Posted by Marcia Stepanek on Cause Global

You’re a small, scrappy social change organization. You crowdsource. [Yeah, yeah, we know. It’s cheaper. Diversity solves problems faster. There is greater wisdom in numbers. Engagement builds collaboration and collaboration brings in money and volunteers.] But that’s not all. Crowdsourcing also turns Establishment philanthropy on its ear. “There’s not a lot of openness in traditional philanthropy,” Nonprofit Technology Network’s Holly Ross told the crowd that came to hear her, Beth KanterNetsquared‘s Amy Sample Ward, video consultant David J. Neff and the Case Foundation’s Kari Saratovsky talk about disruptive change in the sector. Part of SxSW’s Crowdsourcing Innovative Social Change panel, Ross added: “Crowdsourcing is an ethos that the nonprofit industry needs to adopt to better itself.”

To be sure, open philanthropy – the movement for more open collaboration and transparency in the giving sector – is an urgent mission by itself.

Read more at Cause Global