Towels For Troops: Supporting Our Heroes

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.

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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

Happy Thanksgiving!

-Caitlin Ford, Parker Farfour, Alex Corrigan, Kaitlyn Batson

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6 thoughts on “Towels For Troops: Supporting Our Heroes

  1. This is an example of cause marketing that I can support. This advertising campaign does make me wonder how much of the proceeds are actually going to the Wounded Warrior Project. Other instances of cause marketing have not done what they have promised in the past, but this is a reputable cause. From what I can see Brawny is helping the WWP a significant amount, as well as increasing their customer base. Therefore, everyone wins to some degree. This article has encouraged me to buy Brawny paper towels because some of my well-earned money will go to a cause that needs all the money it can get. As a brat, I understand how important family members that serve are to our nation as well as how important they are to their families. I think this is a great opportunity to raise a lot of money for the WWP as well as help boost the brand image of Brawny.

  2. I personally think that sometimes cause marketing can be more about making a company seem philanthropic rather than about actually supporting a non profit organization. However, this does not seem to be the case with Brawny and WWP. The 500,000 dollars they have raised for the company is very impressive and admirable. Supporting WWP obviously works to make the company look positive to the public, but if a charity is also benefiting I do not see this as an unethical. My work is also currently having a charity drive to support WWP so I truly understand the importance of it. This may make buy Brawny over other paper towel brands in the future!

  3. I think this is such an amazing way to use communication and persuasion. So often we see these tools of rhetoric for Coke or McDonald’s but it’s so refreshing to see it used for such a great cause. I actually started reading this because one of the first lines said paper towels are one of the most used products in the house, and it is at mine. It’s so great to see a company help wounded warriors and use incentives for people.

  4. The WWP is a fantastic charity so it’s good to see them being supported in a big way by such a large company. I wish this sort of thing happened more often. In fact, I might even go out of my way start buying Brawny now specifically because of this.

  5. I personally did not know of this campaign that Brawny has committed to market. Being a military spouse this cause definitely hits home, and I support the cause wholeheartedly. I believe that the use of pathos as a way to market to consumers is not only one of the smartest marketing strategies, but also the most effective. In this case, Brawny has done a successful job to raise money for the cause while putting their brand name out there. I have to say, after reading that Brawny supports the Wounded Warriors Project, I think that you have changed my mind as to what brand of paper towels we will now use in my house! Thank you for the read!
    -Whitney Freeman

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