Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series highlighting cause marketing campaigns from around the world called ‘Global Voices’. We hope our team of international contributors will shed insights into cause marketing in their home country and inspire you to expand your own purpose-driven horizons.
All around the world, Brazilians are famous for their generosity and hospitality. The recently-released Cone Communications “Global CSR Study” shows Brazilians are more willing than “any other country surveyed to make changes in their everyday lives and make sacrifices for the greater good”. This environment is perfect for cause marketing, but this great potential has not yet become a reality as most companies are not familiar with the concept and benefits of cause marketing.
A good example of a successful campaign in Brazil is the partnership between Instituto Ayrton Senna and Shell. Instituto Ayrton Senna is an education-focused nonprofit organization created by the sister of three-time Formula One world champion, Ayrton Senna. Since 2013, Shell customers who choose premium gas or ethanol during the month of May unlock a corporate donation to improve Brazilian’s public education.
The partnership is very straight forward and simple to communicate to consumers. To measure results, Shell compares the sales volume of V-Power premium fuel between April and May. Besides driving sales, the campaign is great for branding, raising awareness and increasing consumer loyalty.
In Brazil, there are tens of thousands of gas stations and usually there is little difference in price and quality among the best known brands. Therefore, the partnership with Instituto Ayrton Senna really is a differentiator for Shell.
The results to date have been extremely positive. In just three years of campaign, it raised enough money to benefit more than 580,000 children and young people – far exceeding the expectation of 67,000 in the first year of the campaign.
“Shell has been an incredible partner over the past years. Not only for raising money to the Institute, but by engaging all employees and customers in such an important cause. Here in Brazil, partnerships like this connecting the second and third sectors, are getting bigger”, says Marco Crespo, Instituto Ayrton Senna’s Business Director.
Shell gains a lot from this partnership because, besides contributing to the cause of quality public education it increases the sales of its premium products. More importantly, the marketing team has a business rationale for continuing the partnership, thus creating a sustainable cause marketing campaign, a real win-win situation.
For Ayrton Senna fans, fueling with Shell V-Power Nitro + and contributing to the Institute is also special, because they feel close to one of the greatest Brazilian idols of all time and also contribute to an essential question to the country, quality public education enhancement, without changing anything in their routine.
About the Ayrton Senna Institute. The Ayrton Senna Institute has been working for more than 20 years to improve public education in Brazil, on the belief that the future of the country begins today, in schools. The organization advocates for comprehensive education for every child and teenager, to prepare them for the challenges of the 21st century. And, to make this goal a reality, it researches and develops new approaches to pedagogy, educational management, grading and articulation, applying them in innovative educational solutions to be implemented in public systems – in both elementary and high schools.