Skip to main content

Boston Law Firm Uses Green Cause Marketing Tactic

Hell has officially frozen over.

Boston law firm Sherin & Lodgen announced on Friday, Nov. 15 that during 2009 it will discount 15 percent from its standard rates to clients housed in buildings which are existing or registered LEED certified.

As I’ve pointed out before, cause marketing is about motivating certain behaviors. Usually it involves money going to a cause. However, there are plenty of examples of non-transactional cause marketing like this around.

But a law firm promoting that will discount its prices? Sacrebleu! De telles choses ne sont pas faites. Such things are not done.

Now, truth be told, you could probably go into Sherin & Lodgen… or darn near any other law firm… and negotiate a 15 percent discount off of standard rates and not even break a sweat. Especially given the current economy.

But reputable, non-ambulance-chasing law firms don’t ever talk openly about discounting and they certainly don’t issue a press release about it. Someone call the ethics section of the Bar Association!

That said, Sherin & Lodgen’s exposure probably isn’t that great. I couldn’t find anything that tells me how much LEED certified office space there are in Boston, but I’d be very surprised if it represents even 1 percent of the total. Plus, Sherin & Lodgen basically has three specialties; real estate law, litigation and business law. If you need IP help, you’re out of luck with Sherin & Lodgen. And, the discounting continues only through 2009.

At least once a year I see a cause marketing campaign that no one could have predicted even 5 years before. And this year I’ve already seen two such examples.



Tyson said…
Leave it to a law firm to get clients in the door with a "cause" based discount and then bump rates back up to standard once all the "real" work begins (after 2009). Genius.
Sean said…
this is certainly interesting, but I wonder how hard it actually does reverberate in the economy. I find it difficult to believe that because of that discount, someone will build a green office building here in Beantown. It does, however, provide a nice splash in the press pages and does some good for the law firm. Change comes in increments, of which this is certainly one.
Hi Sean:

I agree with you on both counts. No new LEEDs building or retrofit will be launched because this law firm offers a 15% discount for 1 year.

And yes, the firm id doing this mainly for the public relations value.

But I posted on it because I thought it reflected the growing green Zeitgeist of the time.

Thanks for you thoughtful comment.

Warm regards,
Paul Jones

Popular posts from this blog

Three Ways to Be Charitable

I’ve spent a big chunk of my career working with or for charities. Many of my dearest and ablest friends are in the charity ‘space.’ And the creativity and problem-solving coming out of the nonprofit sector has never been greater.  Although I’ve had numerous nonprofit clients over the last decade or so, I haven’t worked in a charity for about 12 years now, which gives me a certain distance. Distance lends perspective and consequently, I get a lot of people asking me which charities I recommend for donations of money or time. My usual answer is, “it depends.” “On what?” they respond. “On what you want from your charitable activities,” I reply. It sounds like a weaselly consultant kind of an answer, but bear with me for a moment. The English word charity comes from the Latin word caritas and means “from the heart,” implying a voluntary act. Caritas is the same root word for cherish. The Jews come at charity from a different direction. The Hebrew word that is usually rendered as charity is t…

Top Eight Cause-Related Marketing Campaigns of 2007

Yeah, You Read it Right. It's a Top 8 List.

More cause-related marketing campaigns are unveiled every day across the world than I review in a year at the cause-related marketing blog. And, frankly, I don’t see very many campaigns from outside North America. So I won’t pretend that my annual list of the top cause-related marketing campaigns is exhaustive.

But, like any other self-respecting blogger, I won’t let my superficial purview stop me from drawing my own tortured conclusions!

So… cue the drumroll (and the dismissive snickers)… without further ado, here is my list of the eight best cause-related marketing campaigns of 2007.

My list of the worst cause-related marketing campaigns of 2007 follows on Thursday.

Chilis and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
I was delighted by the scope of Chilis’ campaign for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. As you walked in you saw the servers adorned in black co-branded shirts. Other elements included message points on the Chilis beverage coas…

Unconventional Metrics of Cause Marketing Power

The printed edition of Fortune Magazine runs a regular feature called ‘My Metric’ wherein business leaders identify informal but telling measures of current economic activity.

In the January 17, 2011 Michael Glimcher, CEO of Glimcher Realty Trust cited as his metric an increased number of black cars on the streets of New York City as a sign of the U.S. economy’s (still pending?) resurgence.

That got me thinking, what unconventional metrics evidence the power of certain cause marketing efforts?

One immediately leapt to mind, although only General Mills, which makes Yoplait yogurt in the U.S., can measure it.

The Yoplait lid at left... which I purchased in December 2010... can NOT be redeemed for a $0.10 donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Instead it promotes Yoplait’s sponsorship of Komen’s Race for the Cure events, which are numerous.

But I’d bet you a six-pack of Yoplait Greek Honey Vanilla that people nonetheless still send in some number of the lids above in an attempt to redeem th…