3 Ways To Have A Successful Socially-Conscious Campaign

Give-back Marketing: Things To Keep In Mind

Photo by  michael  on  Unsplash

Photo by michael on Unsplash


Millennials love to give back. Despite think-pieces calling us selfish or giving condescending “advice” (um, the avocado toast fiasco anyone?), we’re a generation dedicated to philanthropy. Two years ago CNBC reported 84% of us made a charitable donation and 70% volunteered. How’s that for being self-centered?  

Influenced by millennials, brands have begun to adopt a more socially-conscious approach to their marketing strategies. Thinking of running one on social media? Here are a few tips we’ve observed and learned:

1.  Be genuine

Before you decide to run a socially-conscious campaign, you need ask yourself a few questions: Why are you doing this? Why is this initiative important to your brand? If the answer is “to look good” then you need to dig deeper.

People can sniff out insincerity and you’ll lose all credibility if it seems like you’re jumping on a trend for the sake of it.  To quote every lead of The Bachelor or The Bachelorette – “Are you doing this for the right reasons?”

Choose an organization or social cause you’re either already involved with or interested in. Your passion for the cause will show in your work; making the case for your authenticity.

2.  Spend time on the name

So you’ve decided on your social cause and chosen the organization you’re going to donate to. You’ve drafted strategies and tactics, and the team is excited to get started.

But before you start promoting it on social – does your campaign have a name? More importantly, is it relevant? Short? When we came up with our #150Smiles campaign, we spent a lot of time brainstorming and making sure it was the right fit, easy to remember, and not being used by other brands already.

It’s like naming a newborn child – you don’t want pick something last-minute. You’ll be overwhelmed and might say the first thing that comes to your mind…like pizza: “Nice to meet you, I’m Pizza Thomas”. Jokes aside, the name of your campaign is the foundation on which your content and colour theme will be built upon.

3.  Choose the right platforms

We know you want to reach as many eyes as possible, but you have to be authentic to your brand. If you never use Snapchat, now may not be the time to start. Stick to what you know and what you do best.

You should definitely promote on all of your social channels, but you may decide to focus more on one. With #150Smiles, we got the most engagement on Instagram and in hindsight, would have promoted more on that channel. (Side note: make sure content is customized for each platform!).

Be careful not to overdo it: no one likes a Pushy Paula. Alternate between posting about the campaign, relevant industry news, blog posts and other fun things you like to share with your followers. It will feel more organic, and less like a sales pitch.

What are your thoughts on socially-conscious campaigns? Which brands do them well?

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