Cause Marketing: Doing Well by Doing Good
Big Apple Pet Supply's Facebook page saw its likes increase from 8,100 at the start of the voting (July 2) to nearly 10,200 a little more than a week before voting closed (Aug. 19).
Since the launch of his "Follow Me" campaign, Spitz's @VeganPetMan Twitter account has grown to 1,800 followers (as of press time). Spitz's Vegan PetMan Facebook account grew from zero likes to over 1,000 likes in the five weeks the cause marketing campaign was held. Big Apple Pet Supply's website traffic also increased. In fact, it's now ranked in the top 25,000 of all U.S. websites by web information company Alexa.
While an increase in sales can't be directly attributed to Big Apple Pet Supply's social media growth, Spitz has noticed a spike in sales of cat and dog products. Spitz attributes the majority of his company's success to cause marketing.
"This simply comes down to the fact that people like companies that give back to their community," he says. "In fact, one of the things we look for in the companies we choose to work with is if they have a charitable component as well. You only need to look to our Facebook page and note all the comments thanking us for taking the time, effort and money to help save animals in need. Customers really do care about a company's core values."
Spitz isn't stopping his cause marketing efforts any time soon. In the fall Big Apple Pet Supply will run a similar campaign with a minimum of $5,000 in funding slated to go to more animal shelters. "We'll continue to work with shelters and rescues year-round," Spitz says. "It's just who we are."
The Beauty of Doing Good
Another brand that realizes the power of social media to aid the reach of its cause marketing campaigns is Clarisonic, a Bellevue, Wash.-based beauty brand manufacturer. The brand's "Look Good … Feel Better" self-help beauty workshop is designed to improve the self-esteem and quality of life for people battling cancer.
Similar to Big Apple Pet Supply's strategy, Clarisonic donated $1 for every like on its Facebook page during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). It also bought ad space for the campaign on the social network, as well as promoting it via email blasts, YouTube, its blog and Twitter. A tab on Clarisonic's Facebook page encouraged social sharing to enhance the NBCAM campaign's word-of-mouth marketing.
Aside from raising $30,000 during the campaign, which ran in October 2010, and donating more than $1 million in total to NBCAM last year, Clarisonic grew its Facebook page views by 433 percent to more than 2,000 views per day. It also increased its Facebook fan base during the campaign by 82 percent to nearly 70,000.
Cause marketing via social media doesn't end with Facebook and Twitter, however. Englewood, Colo.-based Sports Authority followed Clarasonic's lead earlier this year with a campaign that supported the fight against breast cancer. But instead of using Facebook to spread its message, the cross-channel retailer raised money via foursquare. Specifcially, it donated $1 to Boarding for Breast Cancer, a nonprofit, youth-focused education, awareness and fundraising foundation, for every person that checked in on foursquare from the Winter X Games between Jan. 27 - Jan. 30. Sports Authority helped raise up to $1,000 per day over a three-day span.