Consumer attitudinal and behavioral research related to cause marketing is, thankfully, becoming increasingly more available. Our industry owes deep gratitude to Cone, Inc. and its invaluable reporting over the years. Cone’s ground-breaking work has clearly validated and advanced the practice of cause marketing. IEG provides valuable insights regarding sponsorship behavior in general. And, more recently, cause research staples including entries from PR Week/Barkley and Edelman have entered the scene. The Cause Marketing Forum’s “Research & Reports” page should be a top link on every serious cause marketer’s list of favorites. I’d like to add another resource to your Cause Research tool box.
Recently, I attended an event hosted by the Atlanta Ad Club. The speaker was Ann Mack, Director of Trendspotting, JWT Intelligence, New York City. This link provides a two-minute overview of JWT’s top 10 predictions for 2011. Our challenge as savvy cause marketers is to think creatively about ways to leverage these trends in our cause promotion planning. I’m thinking about ways to leverage Trend #1, “All the World’s a Game,” into my clients’ planning process. Perhaps a fun game or app to drive social marketing messages, with a donation to a partnering charity. Hmmmm-sounds like a great combo of fun and fundraising to me!
I’d recommend downloading the full “100 Things to Watch” report as well. This report predicts many cause-oriented trends that will advance our industry dramatically.
- Trend 16: “Buy One, Give One-Away” predicts that more businesses will adapt this TOMS Shoes Model.
- Trend 38: “Global Disease, Refocused” notes that in addition to communicable diseases (e.g. AIDS and malaria), many non-communicable diseases (e.g. heart disease, cancer) are on the rise worldwide. JWT anticipates a focus on these diseases by global health groups. Donation strategies will follow.
- I believe Trend 75: “Scanning Everything” could have significant application in the fundraising realm. Will scanning a barcode to make a donation be the next evolution of Text to Give?
- Several environmental predictions are worth noting, including Trend 19: “Coming Clean with Green,” Trend 23: “Deforestation Awareness,” and Trend 86: “Stricter Green Building Standards.”
Keeping track of consumer trends and integrating creative ideas to capitalize on them will keep the cause marketing practice fresh and fuel future growth. Move over “Add a Dollar at Check Out” campaigns, and make way for the future! Is there an app for that?