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Cantilena Music and the Cantilena Music Foundation

Sweet Music to the Cause-Releated Marketer's Ears

Is there any setting that cause-related marketing couldn’t be effectively utilized?

People ask me that question from time to time and my usual answer is “probably, I just haven’t found it yet.”

Once best known as a packaged goods promotion, nowadays cause-related marketing is even successfully used in B2B settings, although I’ve never heard any writer or researcher address that particular wrinkle.

So I’m not surprised to find cause-related marketing utilized by Cantilena Music, which provides commissioned music for companies, weddings, birthday and valentines gifts, and the like in packages ranging from $1,800 to more than $5,500. The price varies based on how many instruments the commission is to be written.

Cantilena… which means a “sustained, smooth-flowing melodic line”… coordinates musical commissions for its stable of composers. As the commissioner you get a classical-style piece several minutes long, the sheet music signed by the composer, and a CD with the recorded composition.

Here’s the cause-related marketing component: 15 percent of every commission goes to the Cantilena Music Foundation which “funds children who are hard of hearing.” That's appropriate the website points out, because not only was Beethoven a famously hard of hearing composer, so too were Frenchman Gabriel Faure and Czech Bedrich Smetana.

Beneficiaries include “the underprivileged in developing countries: as well as hospital patients through the donation of money and equipment for music therapy.” They also supply hearing aids.

That vagueness is a problem. They’ll certainly want to clarify that before too much time passes. Still, I have to applaud Cantilena for applying cause-related marketing not just tactically, but strategically; CRM is plainly a meaningful part of their business plan.

This is further proof that cause-related marketing is making inroads with high-dollar products and services.

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