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Showing posts from September, 2009

Cause Marketing Fun and Games

GamesThatGive.net allows you to play common video games like Solitaire, Sudoku, and Blackjack for free, while making a sliver of a donation to one of 13 nonprofit charities.
Here's how it works. Behind each of the games a static advertisement runs for sponsors like Domino's Pizza, Dial, Pepsi or others.
GamesThatGive.net donates 70 percent of ad revenue to those charities, including the United Way, UNICEF, and the Wilderness Society.
As of this writing on Sept. 22, 2009, the donations counter at the top of the home page read: "GamesThatGive has donated $2032.13 to charity."
I put a handful of questions to Brian Reich, GamesThatGive's principal evangelist, about where the idea came from, how it works, and how it's been received by charities and sponsors. His responses follow.

How did the idea come about for GamesthatGive.net? The idea came, mostly, from the experiences of our CEO, Adam Archer. He traveled the world a few years back and upon his return to the…

Cause Marketing, Affinity, and Alignment

Last night at dinner, a long-time reader and a new friend asked: 'How important is alignment between cause and sponsor? What about CEO passion?
Here's how the discussion went.
For years the best conventional wisdom in cause marketing has been that you choose a cause based on ‘strategic philanthropy.’ If you’re an oil company, you pick environmental causes. If you make ladies purses, you pick women’s causes. If you sell toys, you pick children’s causes. If you’re a restaurant, you pick hunger causes. If you sell organic foods, you support organic farmers.
And indeed, academic researchers have consistently demonstrated that a clear alignment between cause and sponsors tend to pay off best. But it’s more complicated than that.
For instance, an auto body shop might naturally align with, say, a high school that teaches auto body repair. But it would be an unusual for that ‘cause’ to have much affinity.
On the other hand, if the owner of the body shop was a woman who had successfully …

A Company and Cause Grow Through Cause Marketing

Faithful readers:
The following is from my periodic column in the business weekly, the Salt Lake Enterprise. In it I profile how a fast-growing company and a innovative charity connected five years ago in a way that has greatly benefited both parties.
Warm regards, Paul


Since its founding a little more than five years ago, Ragnar Events LLC, which produces the super-sized Ragnar Relay Series, has sprinted to become the nation’s premier overnight relay race.
And almost from the day Ragnar strung out its first yellow finish line, the company has had a charity partner, Salt Lake City, Utah-based Operation Kids.
Headquartered in Kaysville, Utah, Ragnar owns and operates 10 relay races around the country in Arizona, Boston, Florida, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minnesota, New York, Utah, Washington, D.C., and Washington State.
(The picture above comes from Ragnar's Relay Del Sol race, which takes place in Arizona.)
The races typically cover 200 miles. Teams of 12, sometimes dressed in wacky a…