Publication Date

Spring 4-13-2015


School of Communication


Communication Studies: Advertising and Public Relations


cause-related marketing, philanthropy, Susan G. Komen Pink Campaign, ALS ice bucket challenge




The following discussion offers a critical look at cause-related marketing (CRM), a strategic partnership between a corporate and nonprofit entity in which a portion of product sales, or a one-time donation, is given in support of a cause. CRM is an extension of a corporation’s social responsibility efforts in a push to meet increasing consumer demand for organizational accountability and social-consciousness. The discussion examines factors that have fed the mandate for corporate social responsibility, including a connection through online platforms and a generational cohort with a demand to “give back.” Research shows benefits of implementing CRM; however, many ethical issues must be considered when organizations attempt to blend for-profit motives with altruism. CRM and its impact on the definition of philanthropy will be evaluated through the investigation of two campaigns—the Susan G. Komen Pink Campaign and the ALS ice bucket challenge.

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