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Cause Marketing and Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For List

Fortune magazine just published its annual “100 Best Companies to Work for” list and I wondered, how many of these companies are also known for their cause marketing?

Regular readers know that I have found a strong correlation between the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship 2011 CSR Index and whether or not the company was active in cause marketing.

By my reckoning six of the BCCCC CSR List made the top ten and 33 of the 50 companies listed did at least some cause marketing.

Fortune’s ‘100 Best’ list is a little trickier when it comes to cause marketing. Cause marketing almost always faces the consumer, but a good number of companies on Fortune’s list are B2B. There’s several law firms for instance, and multiple energy companies and construction firms.

Moreover, Fortune’s list includes a number of companies that are either regional in their focus or otherwise unfamiliar to me. Which is another way of saying that they may be cause marketers and I just don’t know about it.

Those caveats aside, I found that five of the top ten, and 25 overall do at least some cause marketing.

Here’s my list preceded by the ranking on Fortune’s list:

1 Google
4 Wegman’s Food Market
8 Recreational Equipment (REI)
9 CHG Healthcare Services
12 Mercedes Benz
14 Dreamworks Animation
16 Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
22 The Container Store
32 Whole Foods Market
39 St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
46 Intel
49 Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
55 Men’s Wearhouse
57 Marriott International
60 American Express
61 Nordstrom
62 Build-A-Bear Workshop
63 General Mills
70 Teach for America
73 Starbucks
76 Microsoft
78 Publix Super Markets
79 Mattel
82 Hasbro
99 Darden Restaurants

Over the last five years, I’ve profiled cause marketing campaigns from about half of these companies in this space. Indeed, companies like Marriott and American Express were among cause marketing’s very earliest practitioners. Jerry Welsh at American Express coined and trademarked the phrase 'cause-related marketing.'

Others, especially the grocers Publix and Wegman’s, were pioneers as well. And if you put General Mills’ name in the search box above it will come up dozens of times.

Finally, I could use your help to make this list as complete an accurate as possible. Go to Fortune’s full list here. If there’s a company on Fortune’s list that should be on this list of cause marketers, please let me know. Either comment below or send me an email to aldenkeeneatgmaildotcom.

As you do so, bear in mind that I’m not looking for evidence of good corporate citizenship, or generous corporate philanthropy. I’m looking for evidence of active cause marketing. Link


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