Brawny shows how cause marketing should be done.
In cause marketing, a brand seeks to create a link in the consumer’s mind between the brand and an organization admired for doing good. The organization gets needed visibility and money while the brand gets to share the warm feelings people have for the organization.
The success of cause marketing is dependent on (1) how positively people feel about the organization, (2) the strength of the link forged between the brand and the organization, and (3) the meaning of the link. Brawny’s selection and execution of their association with the Wounded Warrior Project have accomplished all three.
(1) No matter where one stands on the political spectrum, most people feel quite warmly toward the Wounded Warrior Project.
(2) Brawny’s distinctive ads make the connection by artfully featuring the words of wounded warriors. Brawny’s packaging reinforces the connection at the store shelf.
(3) But what sets this cause marketing effort apart is Brawny’s ability to define the meaning of the link to enhance the brand.
Brawny features the words of wounded warriors on what it means to be tough and what it means to get the job done. Brawny doesn’t just build a link between the brand and the Wounded Warrior Project, Brawny uses that link to associate the brand itself with toughness and getting the job done. So when a potential buyer stands before otherwise indistinguishable paper towel alternatives, one brand is associated with charity, toughness, and getting the job done. That’s not logic. That’s just simple, unanalyzed connection.