The trend of helping others

With everything that is happening in the world today, it is nice to see that others are using their products to direct consumers’ attention to things other than America’s economy. Some companies have created a brand based on helping those in need. This trend has been one that can actually make a difference in the world we live in. These companies are using their consumers’ ethos to make them feel as though they are doing the right thing by buying certain products. This marketing tactic has proven to be a successful one because two brands especially have become increasingly popular throughout their mission to help those who truly need it.  

If you haven’t heard of TOMS, you aren’t in with the latest trends.  Here on the campus of UNCW especially, TOMS are almost as big of a hit as Rainbows.  Not only do they look amazing and feel great, the TOMS brand is all about giving back.  For every pair of TOMS sold, the company donates a pair of their shoes to people in need.  The TOMS brand started back in 2006 with the creator’s trip to Argentina, where he saw first hand how many children had no shoes to protect their feet.  This is not only true in Argentina, but in many other developing countries where children grow up barefoot.  The TOMS brand slogan is ONE FOR ONE and is making a major impact on the trend of helping those in need.

Chegg is a resource that hundreds of thousands of students utilize around the world to rent or buy textbooks to save money. One of Chegg’s incentives for students to rent or buy textbooks from their company is their philanthropic marketing strategy.  Chegg markets to their consumers that with their support, Chegg can plant trees around the world. Today, Chegg has planted over five million trees with their partnership with American Forest Global ReLeaf Foundation.  As stated on Chegg’s website these trees are planted worldwide to, “help regenerate areas damaged by wildfire, strengthen River Bounds, and restore wildlife habitats.”  In 2011, 175,000 trees were planted in Pondicherry, India, 40,500 trees were planted in Colorado and 700,000 trees were planted in Florida, just to name a few.  Chegg inspires students to be a catalyst for change around the world.  When their consumers purchase their textbooks through Chegg they can make a difference in the world by improving the environment.

-Kelsey Bendig, Andrea Blanton, Brooke Keller, Brian Burch

16 thoughts on “The trend of helping others

  1. I personally think it is great that companies are using products to direct attention to help those in need and I am all for supporting these causes. I own two pairs of TOMS shoes and I have rented books from Chegg for three years now. I cannot stand when people discredit others who buy the products because they are only buying them because they are “trendy”. While they may have bought the products because they are trendy, they at least become informed and then aware of the issue at hand and by their contribution they are making a difference in someone else’s life. I personally think it is a smart marketing plan and while some people will only buy a product because it is hip at the time, I have continuously bought TOMS and have gotten family members to purchase them also because I believe in the cause. I do think by marketing towards people desire to help others they are able to create more awareness while also promoting products in a way that will make people want to buy them because they support the cause.

  2. Maybe I am just super skeptical, but I am always curious to see what benefit companies gain when they donate to their philanthropies. I feel like time and time again, big corporations are performing charity work for public relations/image building purposes rather than for the sake of the charity. However, I do like TOMS and I think that if I can help a kid in a 3rd world country get shoes somehow, I’ll do it!

  3. These companies are admired and support great causes! I definitely agree when you say this is a great marketing strategy. The good thing about these companies is that they still seem to care even though they use their slogans and causes as marketing strategies. I think it’s a good thing that it’s more support for the company as well as for people in need and the environment. Who wouldn’t want to help? TOMS and Chegg are inspiring for those who want to create more companies like this in the future.

  4. These companies definitely both support great causes. And like you all said, they use the appeal of helping others as a great marketing strategy. Ever since I first learned about TOMS and Chegg, I have been drawn to them. Although they use their causes as a marketing strategy, I think it’s good that the companies also seem to really care about what they are doing. TOMS and Chegg are inspiring for those who want to create other companies like this in the future!

  5. I think that both of these companies have built excellent ethos with consumers. Although they are using the causes as marketing strategies, I feel as though they are very genuine in their motives. The money does actually go towards children in need of shoes for TOMS. I am not as familiar with Chegg’s cause, but I have bought books from them and it seems as though they are really trying to support a good thing. For me personally, I do not feel as bad buying TOMS because I know that some of my money is going towards a good cause and not just a selfish fashion statement. As silly as that sounds, it really is the case, and it really works for these companies.

  6. Companies such as TOMS and Chegg are smart to create themselves as brands that help the needs of others. By creating a brand that gives back to the community, consumers are able to feel more connected to the brand. People buy products due to the stories behind a brand and the image it protrays to the public. People are more likely to buy products from brands such as TOMS and Chegg because they develop an interpersonal relationship with the brand due to the postive image the brand protrays by giving back to the community. Consumers feel good about themsevles when buying these products because they are able to give back to the community as well.

  7. I think brands like TOMS and Chegg are doing some really great philanthropic work through their products. But, at the same time I believe that they are really creating a great brand image for themselves. They are portraying their companies as a “brand that cares”. There are so many companies out there who are doing charity work through the sales of their products or who may just be associated with a philanthropy or community service project. I really think that although many of these companies start out by giving back in order to gain respect and attention from potential buyers, in the end they are still doing good for some cause and I approve!

  8. It is extremely refreshing to see companies trying to help out others. Not only does this set companies apart from others, but it also functions as a great marketing strategy for companies. This is especially true with a company like TOMS shoes. TOMS shoes puts a good image out to the market by donating a pair of shoes for every shoe bought. This concept also works for customers of TOMS shoes. Customers may be willing to pay a little extra money in order to feel better about their purchase, knowing that a pair of shoes is being donated to someone in need. This marketing strategy benefits all parties involved, and everyone is happy!

  9. I’m so glad to be a consumer for both of these companies (TOMS and Chegg) who are very globally aware and pride themselves on giving back to the community in need and the environment. While I love the style and comfort of TOMS, the reason why they really appealed to me (and the reason why I was convinced to buy them) is that they donate a pair to a person in need with each purchase. I am a proud owner of two pairs now and would love to buy another sometime soon. Their popularity is ever-growing on UNCW’s campus too.
    Chegg is another company that I used when buying books this year. With this brand, my initial interest for using it was because of the lower prices. While I do get good deals on renting textbooks for class, it makes me feel even better that the Chegg is planting trees for each book I rent from them. Hopefully more companies catch on to this trend of giving back to the community because I really do believe it makes those brands even more appealing to customers.

  10. While I am usually skeptical of a company’s motives for donating to charity, I do think that TOMS and Chegg both donate to charities because it is the right thing to do. Both of their charities make sense to me. Because I know that the charity work that TOMS does was inspired by a trip to Argentina, it seems more genuine to me. Knowing the narrative behind the charity, helps the consumer understand the reason behind the charity and make the motives seem more genuine.

  11. I love this new trend of branding a company through philanthropy. Our culture is so inundated with meaningless brands that are just out to make a profit. It is nice to see companies that care to leave their mark in the world by helping others. Wouldn’t it be nice if more companies created marketing strategies that helped those in need? I think a lot of people criticize and speculate about the profit being made however I think the people giving the criticisms need to take a step back and see what they are doing to help others. This week, TOMS also promoted the event, One Day Without Shoes, and the company encouraged people to try and go one day barefoot to get a glimpse of the life of someone living in a third world country. I think what brands like TOMS, Chegg, and others are doing is a great thing, and it proves there are still some good people in this world.

  12. Being a customer of both brands, I really enjoy a company that has a stance in something other than their actual product. The fact that if someone buys shoes, TOMS will give shoes to someone else, and when people purchase books, Chegg with plant a tree gives these brand’s a leg up on competition. They are going above the call of duty by giving back. However, I understand if people have concerns about whether the companies are more talk than action. As customers, we put our faith in the brand that it will do what it promises.

  13. I think that companies who strive to help others prove their moral standards through their actions. Consumers want to feel good by doing something essentially effortless. For example, not everyone buys TOMS simply because they want to donate a pair of shoes, they do it because it’s the ‘shoe’ to have… but in return they actually are donating a pair to someone in need without that being their ultimate goal. I think more companies should jump on the giving wagon. It’s a great way to give back to those in need through your profits.

  14. and TOMS are both on to something remarkable, in my opinion. I truly believe that our country and world are facing many of the current issues because people have forgotten the value of giving. I often hear my parents talk about how their parents gave freely to their neighbors even when they didn’t have much to give. I believe that if more companies and businesses hop on board with TOMS and Chegg that we can progress instead of the constant regression. I support both businesses not just because I need textbooks or I enjoy the comfort of TOMS shoes, but because they are willing to help someone other than themselves. That, to me, is such a rare and refreshing thing.

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