I cannot speak for others, but one of the most quickly used products in my household is paper towels. Often times, it seems that they have to be bought on a weekly basis. Thankfully, Brawny, the paper towel company, recognized the necessity that paper towels have become and leveraged their product to help out a worthy cause.
Last year, Brawny partnered with the Wounded Warriors Project to launch an “Inner Strength” campaign. For two years, Brawny has prided itself on standing strong alongside the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) as a means of honoring injured service members. In 2012 alone, Brawny raised more than $500,000 for the WWP.
For those of you who are unaware of the Wounded Warriors Project, it is a form of charitable support for members of the armed forces who were injured in the line of duty. Donations made to WWP help thousands of wounded warriors and their families as they return home from current conflicts.
With great success, Brawny decided to continue this cause marketing initiative committing to raise $600,000 this year. As a means of accomplishing this goal, Brawny has promised to make a direct donation of $250,000 to benefit the WWP. They have also announced their pledge to donate an additional $1, up to $350,000 for every individual who: shares a “Thank You” note on the Brawny Facebook page, “likes” Brawny paper towels on Facebook, or texts THANKS to 272969.
Large goals like this are often hard to achieve, but worth it when it comes to a good cause. In the study of rhetorical theory, Greek philosopher, Aristotle teaches the three modes of persuasion: ethos, pathos, and logos. In this example, Brawny is able to use cause marketing to appeal to pathos or the emotion of the audience, but this tactic is commonly used in cause marketing. Pathos is the strongest mode of persuasion; making it a more frequently used appeal.
Personally, when I hear the word “persuasion” I immediately make the connection to an interchangeable and more frequently used term…Influences. Persuasion is a process directed towards changing or influencing people’s beliefs, attitudes, and intentions. Individuals are persuaded each and every day. Persuasion is a critical and underlying goal of all marketing and advertising efforts.
The “Inner Strength” campaign is an effective form of cause marketing conducted by Brawny and the WWP. This particular campaign does an efficient job of persuading customers purchasing decisions by appealing to the audiences’ emotions. Customers are much more inclined to buy a product if they know that it is for a good cause. It is that simple.
In this case, customers are buying Brawny products because it is to their understanding that a percentage of the proceeds go to the WWP. This is because these consumers feel a sense of sympathy for wounded soldiers. This is a form of persuasion at its finest. Ultimately, cause marketing has proven to pay off in this scenario seeing how Brawny sales are through the roof and donations made to the WWP are at an all-time high
-Caitlin Ford, Parker Farfour, Alex Corrigan, Kaitlyn Batson