Not that long ago, it felt as if the vast majority of corporate-cause alliances fell into one of three buckets: health, hunger and education. Today it feels as if the breadth expands weekly of the spectrum of issues that companies embrace in their social impact work. For instance:
Chipotle’s 2020 Rose Parade float will support the National Young Farmers Coalition. A live post-to-donate element (in which they will donate $1 for every social post using the hashtag #farmers) supports the charity as part of its mission to “cultivate a better world.”
Another example: organic sparkling yerba mate beverage Clean Cause donates 50% of profits to sober living scholarships to assist those with substance abuse and addiction. Clean Cause is available in 6,000 locations around the country including Whole Foods, H-E-B, Fred Meyer, Safeway and Target.
Not only are partner causes becoming more unique, many of the charities with which companies are choosing to partner are becoming more specialized. For example, Macy’s has long been a supporter of veterans’ and military issues. For the past two years of their ‘Macy’s Salutes Those Who Serve’ initiative, the retailer has elected to partner with smaller charities: Bunker Labs helps veteran entrepreneurs start their own business and Blue Star Families builds communities that support military families.
While traditional causes and NGOs will likely continue to receive the bulk of corporate support and attention given their long history and loyalty, we expect to see the breadth of causes companies embrace to continue to widen in 2020.