Why You're Vital to This Market
There’s a lot to love about writing for the cause marketing industry — like loads of clients with paying projects and being part of campaigns that bring positive change to the world.
But it’s like writing copy for any market: You have to be aware of anything that might make your prospects hesitate over your message. Cause campaigns need good writers who can effectively address doubts.
But what kind of doubts? For starters, there’s often the question of why a company chose a specific cause to support in the first place.
Sometimes the connection is relevant to the company’s business focus — like the Home Depot partnership with Habitat for Humanity. Home Depot sells building supplies. Habitat builds homes. It makes sense.
And then sometimes, the connection is personal. Mike’s Hard Lemonade Co., an alcoholic beverage brand, came out with a Special Edition “Pink Lemonade” flavor and donated part of the proceeds to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Their website tells you the donations are made in memory of Jacqueline S., “ … a part of the Mike’s family who left us too soon.”
Every cause campaign has a story to tell, and that’s where you come in. As a writer in the cause marketing industry, your job is to explain the motivations behind a partnership.
You’ll also want to make sure campaigns make sense to consumers.
Plenty of campaigns are straightforward: “Buy this product and $1 of your purchase goes to this specific charity, up to this specific amount.”
But campaigns can get complex. For example, if you work on a cause campaign between a company and multiple nonprofits, you’ll need to explain why that company chose the partners it did and how a prospect’s donation gets divided up.
What you see a lot of these days is a “pick the charity” approach. Subaru does this with their annual winter “Share the Love” event.
For every new Subaru vehicle sold, the company donates $250 to one of five charities: American Forests, the ASPCA®, Make-A-Wish Foundation®, Meals On Wheels Association of America, or Special Olympics.
Though paying customers directed most of the donations, Subaru also had a social media element to the campaign. Facebook users got to participate by “Liking” the Subaru page and then voting for a charity. Every online vote earned the charities a $1 donation.
Several campaigns these days use Facebook to trigger their donations. Some ask for texts. Others require consumers to go online to a specific page and put in a code.
But no matter what the vehicle is for the campaign, consumers need to be told — clearly — how to participate. And the “action funnel” (since it’s not a sales funnel, exactly) must be spelled out. If buyers don’t know what steps to take to support a partnership, the cause campaign flops.
That’s why well-trained cause writers are so crucial to this market.
If you can highlight the key elements of a campaign, as well as draw out essential emotions, and make a prospect understand how his/her action will be put to use — then you’ll be a vital link to making sure important cause messages get heard.
Want to learn more about cause marketing writing? Click here.
Have you noticed any stand-out cause campaigns — good or bad? Share here.
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