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Responsible Advertising — Even When it Hurts

Headquartered in Madrid, the ANAR Foundation believes that all children should have a voice, especially when their rights are violated. Take a look at this video from an impressive street ad campaign by the ANAR Foundation: It’s thought provoking. It’s empathetic. It’s reassuring. The goal of this advertisement is clear – to help children realize […]

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Acumen Fund

Nonprofits must differentiate or die

It’s not a fear tactic deployed by marketing agencies to scare the bejesus out of nonprofits. It is, in fact, a hard truth about the nature of the nonprofit sector. Dissimilar, indistinctive and alike will get you killed in any fiercely competitive, over-saturated market – let alone the nonprofit sector. In today’s market, nonprofits (and […]

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Dove Real Beauty Sketches: Responsible Marketing, I think.

If you haven’t already seen this “Dove Real Beauty Sketches” clip that everyone is posting on Facebook, take a gander: Dove once again pulls through in this touching video about how women view themselves in such poor light compared to how others see them. It is sad how women are especially critical of every mole, […]

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Does sex sell cause-related marketing?

Do you remember this ad? It’s part of PETA’s anti-fur campaign. Though the use of nude celebrities may arouse cynicism, the use of provocative imagery and ardent copy make for a bold message. Ad copy: “Animals killed for their fur are electrocuted, drowned, beaten and often skinned alive. Be comfortable in your own skin, and […]

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Green Valentine’s Day: Forget about lingerie, adopt a pig for that special someone in your life.

According to American Greetings Corporation, around a billion Valentine’s cards are sent globally each year. That’s a whole ‘lotta love, and waste, being spread around the world. Don’t forget about boxes of chocolates, lingerie, and expensive jewelry. So what are some alternative more earth-friendly ideas? How about adopting a rescued farm animal? Better yet, why […]

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Is cause-related marketing strategically responsible?

In 1983, American Express coined the term “cause-related marketing” (CRM) when it embarked on a charitable endeavor to renovate the Statue of Liberty. The effort netted $1.7M (roughly $4M today when adjusted for inflation) for the preservation of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Needless to say, CRM is now an integral business strategy […]

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KFC’s shameful attempt at Responsible Marketing

A Utah KFC’s recent attempt at Responsible Marketing via this hair-brained cause marketing campaign has left us speechless: That’s right, buy a jug of high fructose corn syrup-powered soda pop—one of the primary causes of diabetes and childhood obesity—and we’ll donate a dollar to juvenile diabetes research. Our take: absolutely shameful and completely irresponsible. What’s […]

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Coke vs. Pepsi

The Pepsi vs. Coke social good smackdown

When Coke and Pepsi start being judged by their social responsibility as much as their taste (and their ads), you’ll know Responsible Marketing has arrived, right? Well, that time has come. The Huffington Post recently ran an online poll pitting Pepsi’s Refresh Project Vs. Coke’s Live Positively campaigns. The associated article does a great job […]

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Outsource Marketing 2.0 coming soon

Join us as we unveil our new look and see what it means for us, our clients and ultimately, our world. Pam Mauk, Executive Director of Family Resource Center will share some of the important work they’re doing to support 18 charities that provide essential human services on the Eastside. Wednesday, September 9, 2009 Doors […]

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Is responsibility the Holy Grail of marketing?

Gennefer Snowfield at the Triple Pundit interviewed me earlier this week and asked me a host of questions regarding Responsible Marketing, including— Where the Responsible Marketing concept came from; The impetus for this blog; How I define Responsible Marketing; Where Responsible Marketing fits with cause marketing; Which brands are leading in Responsible Marketing; My predictions […]

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Serve your community, get free Starbucks coffee

Starbucks has launched a new campaign to make it easier to participate in President Obama’s call for national service. With a goal of helping raise over one million hours of community service, the Starbucks Pledge5 campaign is in full-swing running in-stores and online. With the leading question “Are you in?” the ask is for a […]

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Responsible or not? Using the dead to sell

On Christmas Day, John Lennon returned from the dead. Well, his image and voice were resurrected to help the One Laptop Per Child Foundation “OLPCF” and it’s raised a few eyebrows (and hackles). If you haven’t heard about the OLPCF, here’s a summary: It’s an education project, not a laptop project. Inexpensive, durable, networked laptops […]

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Share the love when you buy a new Subaru

We all know what to expect when it comes to automobile pitches, don’t we? Year-end closeouts! Employee pricing! No reasonable offer refused! Support a cause?! Subaru has thrown a curve ball into the mix with it’s Share the Love promotion. When you buy or lease any new Subaru now and January 2, 2009, Subaru will […]

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Help provide shoes to 30,000 children in Ethiopia

I’ve mentioned TOMS Shoes before. They’re the company that donates a pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair they sell. I love their model, and for the holidays, they are campaigning to give away 30,000 pairs of shoes to children in Ethiopia. Here’s a little more info: View TOMS Project Holiday […]

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Can you market as well as a state agency?

Some of the best marketing today is being done by groups typically considered boring and safe. You know—state agencies. Battling preconceptions to market employment office services to employers A few years back, Outsource Marketing helped a consortium of seven U.S. states whose charter was to find effective new ways to market state one-stop services to […]

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Marketers get attention with Election Day freebies

Regardless of how you plan to vote, chances are you are talking about the election. With estimates of turnout exceeding 130 million people, Election Day promotions make sense. Starbucks is giving away free coffee: View this video on YouTube Krispy Kreme is giving away free donuts: And Ben and Jerry’s is giving away free ice […]

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25 ways your business can help fight poverty

It’s Blog Action Day! The purpose of Blog Action Day is to create a worldwide discussion regarding an important issue. This year, it’s poverty. For this post, I wanted my post to meet three criteria: To bring value to readers, it must result in a list of creative ways business can help fight poverty To […]

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A day made better for teachers by OfficeMax

Did you know that, on average, teachers spend about $1,200 of their own money to cover the cost of classroom supplies? The “teacher-funded” classroom is an outrage when you consider teacher compensation, and OfficeMax has partnered with Adopt-A-Classroom “to recognize extraordinary teachers for their dedication and innovative approach to education.” During their A Day Made […]

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TOMS Shoes: More than different

TOMS Shoes was founded by Blake Mycoskie after a life-changing trip to Argentina. While there, he learned about the Alpargata soft shoe, but ironically, also met children in villages that had no shoes. So he created a shoe company whose goals aren’t based on shoes sold, but on shoes given away. For every pair of […]

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How can business help the poor?

The Responsible Marketing Blog will be participating in Blog Action Day on Wednesday, October 15th. Here’s what it’s about: First and last, the purpose of Blog Action Day is to create a discussion. We ask bloggers to take a single day out of their schedule and focus it on an important issue. By doing so […]

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