The 2008 PR Week / Barkley Cause Survey reveals that philanthropic activities reward businesses’ bottom lines, even in the midst of economic constraints. In particular, the survey found that moms specifically channel their purchasing decisions toward companies that support a cause. Among the 83 million American moms, 82% say they drive household purchasing decisions, representing over $2.1 trillion in annual spending.  The survey revealed that moms demand companies use their power for good, with 85.6% saying it’s important for companies to support a cause. With regard to their purchasing decisions, 58% say they would pay more for a brand that supports a cause, 69.2% say they would try a brand because it supports a cause, and 76.8% say they would recommend a brand that supports a cause. Overall, 66% of moms say they have purchased a brand because it supports a cause.  When surveyed about the economy’s effect on their household charitable giving, 29% of moms say they have cut back on their contributions.  “Moms have clearly spoken that cause marketing is an important part of their relationship with brands,” said Mike Swenson, EVP and chief marketing officer, Barkley. “Even while limiting their personal giving, moms still choose to purchase brands that support a cause–sometimes at a premium. Smart brands are recognizing that cause helps them be as recession-proof as possible.”  For the full survey or to listen to a Podcast of the Cause Survey Roundtable, visit Barkley or PR Week.

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