cause driven

Here in Calgary the cashiers sometimes ask you, in addition to your purchase, whether you would like to donate $2.00 to some charity. I usually say “not today” – meaning I would some other time. Sometimes someone ahead in the line will agree to donate, and then 2nd person will also agree . Out of guilt? Or out of good will? I doubt the latter. This needs to be re-designed.

Here’s a better solution: Make the donation be WITHIN the price of the product. And let the consumer know this and they will talk about it.

If these businesses really care THEN  JUST DO IT. Remove the choice and guilt trip you put on us at the very of end of the process.

When it comes time to pay I don’t think people would suddenly look in disgust and leave the bottle on the counter when they see 18 dollars instead of 16 dollars. They would enter that business knowing they donate with every purchase.  Why? Because people attach themselves to companies they relate to. Because they feel good about them. Make your business stand for something! The beer drinkers or grocery consumers will buy products from those companies that have those set of values in place. In this case to do more good for the world.

Don’t believe this will work? Here’s excerpt from page 182 of Max Lenderman’s Brand New World:

A survey reported in Advertising Age found that 90 percent of millennial’s – those born between 1979 and 2001 – said they were “very likely” to switch from one brand to another that had a strong association with a good cause.

Move from Abundance

Tyler Durdens words of wisdom:

First of all, every minute of this movie has something to teach you, so please go and watch it if you haven’t already. Its based on the novel of the same name, Fight Club.

Now the message? Anti-consumerism! No that isn’t exactly what I’m addressing. But what I can safely say is just about any kind of material good is now available in about any place in North America. Go to any climate controlled shopping centre and you will find entire sections of the mall devoted to home theater equipment, or 30 varieties of cell phones, or 14 different doggie biscuits. You want it? you got it!

And for some reason we’ve gotten so used to this that it doesn’t seem so remarkable anymore. If you told about this world to your grandparents back in the day they would be awestruck. They lived in a world of scarcity, but changes in modern life has resulted in a world of abundance.

Daniel Pink discusses this issue in his book —- A Whole New Mind.

In one of his countless examples he notes that we have so much stuff that an entire industry has been created to cater to this “extra stuff”. Self storage has become a 17 billion annual industry in the US! What does this all mean?

In pop culture, in movies and television shows like Heroes, there is this overwhelming trend of people needing transcendance and meaning in there lives. Were getting richer, better standard of living, but  hasn’t increased our happiness. Exotic practices such as yoga and meditation once thought as very niche subjects in North America have now gone completely main stream.

What does this mean for marketing? This spiritual war that Tyler Durden addresses – this constant consumerism – isn’t going to satisfy the need for meaning. We now desire more. This abundance has resulted in push for more beauty and meaning in the products we buy and companies need to know this to continue.  Its not enough anymore to create a functional product.

Recently I bought a box of Maynards candy and each box bought  goes toward a brick in constructing a school in Africa. I love it!  Not only am I rotting my teeth but its helping people improve there lives. Now I bought the box of candy cos I love the candy, but when I read that its going towards something greater that made me feel good.   A company that promotes this form of social entrepreneurship creates a story that there consumers will share with one another.

I want to purchase shoes from TOMS one day, not only because they make quality shoes, but because the company has meaning. And isn’t this an idea thats worth spreading? In a world of material plenty, we now have more significant desires. Companies who know this will have a huge advantage.