Skip to main content

A Sold Cause Marketing Campaign from Mimi's Cafe

Right now at Mimi’s restaurants, when you buy a ‘Miracle Balloon’ pin for $5 benefiting Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, you get a paper icon to be displayed in the restaurant and three bounceback coupons worth as much as $30.

I once wrote that Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals had forgotten more about cause marketing than almost any other charity knew about the practice. I meant that as a back-handed compliment. From my vantage-point it seemed to me that many of the things that CMNH had once known in its bones about what did and didn’t work in cause marketing seemed to be lost to CMNH’s institutional memory.

But this promotion tells me that Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals has regained its footing. This is a very solid paper icon campaign.  

Mimi’s Café is a casual dining restaurant chain with more than 100 stores in 22 states, with a heavy concentration of the total units in California. Mimi’s Café is a division of Bob Evans Farms.

What’s to like about the campaign?

Let’s start with the coupon paper icon. While many charities have paper icon campaigns very few feature bounceback coupons. But they serve both the charity and the sponsors. They provide extra inducement for customers to buy a paper icon, which is good for the charity. And they bring customer’s back to Mimi’s. And soon. The coupons expire in August 2012.

I like the two-track aspect to the campaign. Pay a $1 and toy get the coupons. Buy the pin for $5 and you also get the coupons.

The table tent also shows CMNH’s sophistication. Day was when you’d just repeat the same messaging on both sides. Instead, CMNH realizes that people, while waiting for their server or meal, read stuff. Buy making the messaging you increase the chances that people will read more about the cause.

Conspicuous by its absence is a QR code, something that Chili’s does in its paper icon campaign benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Such a code could have directed customers to video ‘Miracle Stories’ or appeals from CMNH’s roster of celebrities. They could have tried some kind of sweepstakes component that brings lucky winners to CMNH’s annual Telethon. They could have used a QR code to bring people to a special site hosted by Dr. Oz, one of the hosts of their Telethon, who could offer children’s health tips.

How was it sold? Well, in fact, I asked about it. The newbie server didn’t know much, but her more senior trainer did and answered my questions easily.

Good for Mimi’s for training her right and good for CMNH.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

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…

Cause-Related Marketing Meets Microfinance

Kiva.org and Advanta.com Mix it Up

You’d have had to have been in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia the last year or so to have missed the run up of microfinance. Between 2004 and 2006 more than $4 billion of capital flowed into microfinance institutions. All told experts say the total loan microfinance loan portfolio may be as much as $12.5 billion. And of course the father of microfinance, Muhammad Yunus won the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Microfinance is now so respectable, so effective, (so profitable!) that it’s already enjoying its first global backlash.

Actually that first sentence is hyperbole. Because even in Ulaanbaatar… far from almost anywhere on the vast, frigid steppes of Mongolia… microfinance is thriving such that the earliest recipients of micro loans there are now complaining about taxes and government bureaucracy! And May 29-31, 2008 the Conference of Microfinance Institutions will convene in Ulaanbaatar, the eleventh such annual conference.
Now Advanta, a credit card issuer to small…

Cause Marketing Beer with BOGO, Brew One Give One

On Monday’s post I touched on the topic of telling people what your cause marketing campaign accomplished when completed. I’ve recommended this approach to clients as a way to keep open the lines of communication with customers and clients and to get extra value from the campaign.

In other words, you’ll want to hold back some of the promotion’s budget to continue to activate the effort until the very end.

But what if that really cuts across the grain in your organization? What if it’s just not in your corporate DNA to do anything but to frontload your cause marketing activation? Well, then, add the report back to the activation of your next cause marketing effort.

New Belgium Brewing of Ft. Collins, Colorado, said to be the seventh largest brewery in the United States, did just that with this ad in Sunset magazine. I found this ad in the Alden Keene Cause Marketing Database.

New Belgium donates $1 for every barrel it brews and sells. It’s a BOGO cause marketing effort, Buy One Give One. …