By Peter Panepento
Impact, not sales, is the top motivation for companies when they select nonprofit partners for cause marketing campaigns, according to a new survey by the consultancy For Momentum.
Make no mistake: sales and public image are also vital components of effective cause-marketing programs.
But a small survey of top national brands — released by For Momentum at the Cause Marketing Forum’s annual conference — shows that, above all, charities need to be able to clearly demonstrate how a company’s investment will impact their missions and show how their work aligns with the company’s brand.
About three-quarters of the companies surveyed — 76 percent — say that impact is the top factor for selecting a nonprofit partner.
However, although impact is a top priority for most businesses, merely showing that an investment will achieve results is not enough for most companies to support a charity.
The survey also found that companies want to make sure that they are supporting programs that connect closely to their brand.
That means charities must research and understand the company’s brand goals — and how it measures the success of its cause-marketing arrangements.
“The most important takeaway for nonprofits is to do your homework,” said Mollye Rhea, For Momentum’s president and founder.
According to the survey, more than 9 in 10 companies say they select partners based on whether their programs align with the company’s brand — so charities need to make sure they are being careful in terms of where they cast their nets.
The full report is available for download on For Momentum’s website.