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Showing posts from June, 2008

Alden Keene Gets More Competition, This Time From IBM

My boutique marketing agency... Alden Keene & Associates... is about to get some more competition, this time from IBM. They will officially release the following press release later today.

Don't feel like you can afford IBM?

You're probably right.

So if you're in need of cutting-edge marketing from someone called "a veteran of the cause-marketing wars," contact me Paul Jones, at aldenkeene[at]gmail[dot]com. And ask for the 'Big Blue Special'.


New IBM Consulting Offerings Help Clients Be Greener, More Ethical:

Improving Corporate Social Responsibility Can Grow Revenue, Market Share

SOMERS, NY -- 30 June 2008: New IBM (NYSE:IBM) consulting offerings can help clients understand and improve their societal impact – from carbon management to labor practices – increasing their competitive position and appeal to consumers and other interested parties.

“Operating a business ethically and environmentally is not only a requirement today, …

Internet Telethons and Cause-Related Marketing

Years ago when I was still writing the Children’s Miracle Network Telethon (CMN), I would get a call about every month or so from someone who was interested in producing a telethon and wanted to learn how CMN did it.

Of course I did my level best to dissuade them because who needs the competition, right?

But beyond that everyone that called thought that producing a telethon was a matter of setting up a telephone bank and hiring a camera crew.

If only.

They didn’t know about the $2 million budget, the crew of hundreds, the satellite uplinks and downlinks, the celebrity contract riders, the script of 40,000 words, and a million (no exaggeration) other details.

I'll never forget leading a CNN producer around backstage at the Children's Miracle Network telethon at Disney World and the look of awe on her face. It really was a big, complicated show.

All these years later, telethons are breathing their last, the victim of 500-channel universe and other modern challenges I’ve highlighted be…

Formalizing Your Informal Learning

The greatest informal learner’s share a secret. To really give their informal learning flight they formalize it. Leonardo da Vinci did it. So did Michelangelo. R. Buckminster Fuller, the gadabout inventor of the geodesic dome, did it in spades.

More on the easy-to-use technique that has fired the imaginations of geniuses and everyday blokes alike since before the Renaissance on my blog on Informal Learning called the Learner’s Guild.

Scratch Off Cause-Related Marketing

A New Paper Icon Approach

At Staples right now is this inventive paper icon campaign for City of Hope, a research and treatment hospital in Southern California with a specialty in cancer.

It goes for the typical $1. When you scratch off the overprint, you get a bounce-back discount coupon for savings from $5 to $50 on subsequent purchases of specific items at Staples.

While there have long been coupon icons, they typically are much larger. This approach is simpler and smaller.

It’s also more versatile. It would be very easy to add a sweepstakes component. For instance, if City of hope has some kind of annual rallying point…a race, an event, a gala… the sweepstakes could bring some lucky winner(s) to the event. Although to be sure, laws in the United States would require a no-cost form of entry.

I don’t know what it costs to print these icons, but on first blush I expect that with 4 colors it’s more than with the standard issue paper icons. City of Hope’s website says the campaign began in …

Cause-Related Marketing for Lovers

Cartier Love Bracelet

I adore Cartier’s Love Charity bracelet cause-related marketing promotion.

When you buy one of their Love Charity bracelets they will support one of 24 charities with a donation of either $100 or $200 depending on which bracelet you buy.

There’s a lot of moving parts here but in the main the promotion consists of the following:
The promotion supports the invented ‘Love Day’ 2008, which is today, June 19. Overall Cartier supports the charitable efforts of Action Against Hunger, a children's hunger charity. Cartier's support will go to AAH's effirts to feeding children in the cyclone-raved Burmese state of North Rakhine. Cartier’s commitment to Action Against Hunger runs for the next three years. In the United States, 24 celebrities (25 if you count country music husband and wife Tim McGraw and Faith Hill separately) from the world’s of music and film…along with Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel thrown in for good measure… have a bracelet themed to their chosen ch…

Knowledge and Informal Leanring

There I was watching the always fascinating Bear Grylls on Man vs. Wild rig a makeshift compass out of small strand of steel wire, a tree leaf and a cup full of water in a tiny rock cistern and I asked myself, aside from simple curiosity what good is knowing how to do this?

I’m a marketing and communications consultant so will knowing this make my spreadsheets more fulsome. Will my analysis be more keen, my writing more incisive now that I know how to do the same?

For that matter is there any value in knowing stuff that isn’t directly related to one’s vocation?

The short answer is: yes.

I address how that's so in my blog on informal learning named The Learner’s Guild in a post called Knowledge as a Goal of Informal Learning.

A Reporter Needs Sources on a Cause-Related Marketing Type Story

Hey Gang:

I just became aware of a reporter that's looking for sources on gifts that give back along the vein of Ten Thousand Villages. If you can help her out, by all means contact her at the email below, but take note of her June 24 deadline.

All the best,

Paul Jones, President
Alden Keene & Associates

Summary: Gifts that "Give Back"
Name: Lauren Parker
Title: Editor
Media Outlet/Publication: Accessories magazine
Anonymous? No
Specific Geographic Region? No
Deadline: 11:00 AM EASTERN - June 24
"I'm writing a holiday gift guide article on 'gifts that give back' in the accessories industry. Not just items that donate $$ to a cause after the fact, but rather companies that help set up womenaround the world to develop sustainable businesses ( or, then sell the handmade items online or wholesale. If you represent any such organizations, please let me know!Thx! Lauren Parker"…

Strategic Cause-Related Marketing

Luxury Goods from Monique Pean

While there are notable exceptions…General Mills comes to mind… companies generally employ the techniques of cause-related marketing tactically. But the methods of cause related marketing can also be woven into corporate strategy, as in the case of luxury goods maker Monique Pean.

Named for the eponymous designer and former investment banker, Monique Pean sells stunningly expensive jewelry in places like Bergdorf Goodman in New York City. The little bangle shown is made from 25,000 year old fossilized woolly mammoth ivory and recycled gold and goes for cool $14,000.

Here’s a partial list of the cause-related marketing and corporate social responsibility elements built into Monique Pean’s business model: The ivory used is gathered by native Alaskans above the Artic Circle, much of which is newly visible courtesy of the retreating ice sheet. And since it's summer... the longest days of the year... the native Alaskans near the pole have plenty of daylight …

Amidst the Red Rock Splendor

Hi Gang:

As you read this I'll be hiking and enjoying the red rocks of Bryce Canyon and Zion's National Parks in Southern Utah with my family.

But don't despair I'll be back next week in time to post on my normal schedule.

All the best,
Paul Jones

Keep Artsy Creative Directors Away from Your Cause-Related Marketing Campaigns

Drew Barrymore for the United Nations World Food Programme

I can see it now. In the wake of a string of natural disasters and skyrocketing food prices in the Developing World, management at UN World Food Programme (WFP) decide to commence some serious marketing. So they start taking meetings with fancy ad agencies.

Here’s how the successful meeting went:

The senior manager at the agency turned on the charm and created a “reality distortion field” before turning the time over to the creative director, who immediately started to weave a persuasive narrative. “We’ll put actresses like Rachel Weisz and Drew Barrymore in PSAs, in print ads and on Oprah. Imagine stark, beautifully-shot images of Drew feeding darling doe-eyed kids in Kenya in haunting black and white. The images will underscore that issue of hunger in the Developing World is black and white…”

At that point the UN World Food Programme managers should have kicked that agency to the curb.

Unless your cause is the Ansel Adams Black a…

Cause-Related Marketing You Can Drink To

I Detect Hints of Hickory with Subtle Notes of Rosin and Glove Leather

Late in May three star players from the Atlanta Braves baseball team debuted their latest charitable endeavors, table wines from Chile and Spain with the bottles featuring their images and with proceeds from the sales benefiting the charities of their choice.

The players… Chipper Jones, Brian McCann and Tom Glavine… unveiled Chipper Chardonnay, McCann Merlot, and (wait for it) Cabernet Glavignon. They sell for around for $14 at retail outlets like Kroger and Wal-Mart and proceeds benefit the Miracle League, the Rally Foundation for Childhood Cancer Research and CURE Childhood Cancer respectively.

The Atlanta trio join professional baseball players from the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and Cincinnati Reds and several legends of the game with their own labels. There are two former NFL players...Dan Marino and Bobby Herbert... with labels, and two players from the National Hockey League. Two special labels for red an…

Informal Learning and the Acquisition of Expertise

Researchers say that it takes right about 10 years to acquire expertise in anything.

And the Tiger Woods video above notwithstanding, it isn’t innate talent that makes you an expert, but those 10 years of study and practice. That explains why Tiger Wood is better golfer than Paul Jones.

But what explains why Tiger is better than all his rivals, who have, after all, been playing just as long as he has and sometimes longer?

For answers to that question and the role that informal learning plays, visit The Learner’s Guild, my blog on informal learning, for the post called ‘Let Us Now Praise Famous Informal Learners.’

My First National Cause-Related Marketing Sponsorship Turns 10

Anatomy of a Multi-Phase Cause-Related Marketing Sponsorship

Last weekend, May 31 and June 1, the Children’s Miracle Network aired their 25th annual telethon, called ‘Celebration'. Now more than ever Celebration is a sponsorship vehicle and as it happens, I caught their recognition of Carmike Cinemas, a cause-related marketing sponsorship that even today is unusually well-rounded, if I say so myself.

Here were the elements back when I sold the sponsorship in 1998: During the month of May in the lead up to the telethon, Carmike would broadcast on their more than 2,500 screens a movie trailer featuring then San Francisco 49er Quarterback (and now a member of the NFL Hall of Fame) Steve Young. Steve narrated the story of a kid who was desperately sick but had gotten better at on of CMN’s affiliated hospitals. The trailer was about 70 seconds long.
Carmike would post movie-style and sized posters in their frames featuring the promotion the child and Steve Young.
Carmike would sell Miracle…