The kids are back on campuses, the bookstores are being cleared out, and the dining halls are full. It’s the start of fall semester and as Mia looks at the pictures hanging on her wall, she reminisces about her time at the University of Iowa.
One of her fondest memories is of the University of Iowa Dance Marathon (UIDM). This is the largest student organization on campus. It provides yearlong emotional and financial support to pediatric oncology patients and their families who are being treated at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital. Throughout the year, students plan fundraising events, family activities, and student meetings to build up for The Big Event. The Big Event is a big dance party where participants cannot sit, sleep, or drink caffeine (that was a doozy) for 24-hours to take a stand against pediatric cancer.
Her senior year, Mia served on the Executive Council as the PR/Marketing Director. That year, they had the largest monetary increase (20%) and raised a total of $2.4 million. In addition to the monetary increase, the organization also saw an increase in recruitment, merchandise sales, family satisfaction, sponsor engagement and new and innovative ways of thinking.
She thought about how easy it was to market and fundraise for this cause. Not only did she have the passion for it but also because it’s easy to share that passion with others. People were so willing to give when they knew it was going towards a great cause.
So why is “cause marketing” so easy to market? Because it’s what the people want! According to a study done by Cone in 2010, 90% of consumers want companies to share how they are benefiting a good cause. That’s over 278 million people in the U.S. that want to know how a company is using its time, money and resources for good.
The study also found that in Millennials and Consumer Marketing statistics, 85% buy a product in which a portion of the sales goes to the support of a cause or issue. That percentage is even higher for moms at 92%!
As Mia took a sip of her coffee, she wondered why more influential companies don’t use their power for good if it would increase their customer base as well. It would be easy to find a cause or initiative that also resonated with your company’s values. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, fundraise for a 5K, or even start your own Dance Marathon. Whatever it is, find a way to give back. Your customers will love it and so will you.