Cause Marketing with Celine Dion, Hallmark and UNICEF

Made my annual pilgrimage to the nearby Hallmark Gold Crown store for Valentine’s Day (Feb 14) and couldn’t pass up the musical card display featuring songs by Celine Dion and benefiting UNICEF.

This isn’t transactional cause marketing, but rather a licensing deal with Hallmark that dates to 2006. In the course of the year, Hallmark offers more than 100 cards… only a few of which are musical cards… carrying the UNICEF branding. 

I like the campaign. And I applaud the poor devil that had to clear the music rights. That is yeoman’s work, my friends.

But to me the messaging seems a little… to coin a term… 'Hall-mawkish.'

The line “where every child is free… simply to be a child” reads like a half measure. I know my Americanism is showing here, but don’t we want the world’s children to be free? Period. End of sentence?

And the opening line, “UNICEF and Celine Dion are committed to creating a world where children can grow up happy, healthy and hopeful…” draws too much equivalency between UNICEF, whose work is decades old, and Ms. Dion.

Celine Dion has been undeniably generous to UNICEF. But Celine Dion, age 41,  is not the same thing as UNICEF, age 63.

Moreover, where are you and I in that paragraph? Where’s the call to support the mission of UNICEF? Where’s the sentence or two about the guts of what UNICEF really does? Where’s the appeal to the ‘better angels of our nature’?

Missing, I'm sad to say.

Labels: , ,