Skip to main content

Avon and 100% Donation Cause Marketing

When you buy a bottle of Avon’s Pink Power Pro Nail Enamel, 100% of the profits go to Avon Breast Cancer Crusade. Avon sells the product for $3 a bottle.

Since 1992, the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade under the aegis of the Avon Foundation has generated more than $740 million, an astonishing number by any measure. Given Avon’s bona fides, I wonder why it bothers with the 100% of profits model for this product? Why not just follow MAC Viva Glam lipsticks and glosses lead and give 100% of sales of this product to Avon Breast Cancer Crusade?

Why would they want to? After all, such efforts include not only the cost of the donation, but the cost of the product along with the cost of distribution, which in Avon’s case would certainly include commissions to the Avon ladies. A $3 donation would probably cost Avon something north of $4 per bottle.

The short answer is those Avon ladies need all the sales arrows in their quiver that they can get. They need a low-threat way to talk about Avon products and the Avon business opportunity. Plus, basically giving a product away for the price of a donation to a good cause creates a natural desire to reciprocate in some way. It also qualifies buyers, since they have to pull out their pocketbooks in order to take advantage of the offer.

And so, to be able to lead with something like, “when you buy Avon’s Pink Power Pro Nail Enamel every penny goes to Avon Breast Cancer Crusade,” is a pretty cool story to tell.

Likewise, every year a new generation of girls grows up to become part of Avon’s favored demographic; many of whom "know not" Avon. So long as the product is of a good quality, well-priced, and comes in colors women will respond to, giving it away for a $3 donation gives Avon has a second class of advantage. In effect, it becomes a sampling opportunity.

I glanced quickly through Avon’s online catalog and found 10 items associated with breast cancer: a pink denim jacket, another nail polish, a pin, a watch, and more. Eight of the items were merchandise and two polishes represented transactional cause marketing; buy this and a donation of $x is made.

In most cases Avon names the donation amount generated by a purchase. Avon has a foot in 100% donation door already.

To Avon I say step through the 100% donation door one year and see how it works.


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…

KFC Concept Restaurant Gives a Nod to Cause Marketing for Local Causes

KFC, a unit of Yum Brands, is testing a new quick-serve restaurant version of the fried chicken outlet and among the changes is that its cause marketing efforts will be much more local, according to Anne Fuller, senior director of development for KFC eleven.

The KFC eleven test store is in Louisville, Kentucky, KFC’s headquarters. When it opens August 5, 2013, it will feature rice bowls, flatbreads, salads, KFC original recipe chicken among other items, plus sides. A second test location is set to open in Louisville before year’s end. The 11 in KFC eleven is a salute to the 11 herbs and spices in their original recipe chicken.

The trade-dress for the test store includes lamp lighting, digital signage with community news, and artwork from local artists.

Why step into the quick serve space? Fuller answered a reporter from this way: “People love KFC but it's not a frequent choice for many guests for some reason. We wanted to create a broad and balanced menu that could mayb…