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Cause Marketing Has Its Benefits, But Can Sometimes Backfire

October 20, 2011: 02:48 AM EST
Cause marketing – which otherwise offers many benefits – can sometimes backfire on a company when it fails to recognize that its performance can sometimes seem inconsistent with the message of the cause, according to Saj-Nicole Joni writing in the Forbes Blog. That inconsistency gets noticed by consumers who are not afraid to express their sentiments in social media. A classic example is Dove’s “Campaign for Real Beauty” of 2005, a huge success at first, driving a 20 percent increase in Dove sales. The campaign urged people to look deeper within for real beauty But competitors noticed that ad messages from other brands in the Unilever product line conflicted with the Dove emphasis on real beauty. Dove sales sagged, and the campaign was eventually scrapped.
Saj-Nicole Joni , "Beware the Hidden Traps in Cause Marketing", Forbes Blog, October 20, 2011, © Forbes.com LLC
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