Company: John Hancock
Nonprofit Partner: One Fund Boston
Launch Date: April 3, 2014
Boston Marathon sponsor John Hancock is promoting a high profile cause marketing effort in association with today’s 2014 Boston Marathon, a year after the tragic finish line bombing incident. The company is encouraging individuals to tweet a photo or message (or upload it online) with the hashtag #WeRunTogether (the race theme) to unlock a $1 donation to the One Fund Boston, up to $26.2k (the company had already pledged to make a flat $26.2k donation the fund). In addition, the company is offering bracelets made from 2013 marathon street banners and 100% of the proceeds donated to the One Fund.
Disaster giving can be a particularly sensitive undertaking for a company of any size. This effort from John Hancock offers a strong example of best practice in this challenging space. With the announcement of the formation of the One Fund Boston last year, longtime sponsor John Hancock made a cornerstone commitment of $1 million, setting the stage for an outpouring of corporate and private donations. Within the first 90 days, the One Fund had collected $61 million in donations. This one-year cause marketing effort from Hancock is a simple yet tasteful encouragement to rally additional support for the broad Boston Marathon community, both financially and through individual messages of support. Offering up a flat $26.2k donation and then asking individuals to unlock an additional $26.2k is a smart and strategic way to invite the wider community to participate.