Tis the season for back-to-school promotions and many companies and causes are teaming up for mutual benefit. Here are two cause marketing campaigns for the back-to-school season that are similar in their social aspects but quite different in their choice of causes.
Target has teamed up with local schools in a two-part campaign, called Give With Target.
First the company will give $2.5 million in grants to "in-need" schools. The second part involves a contest on Target's Facebook page. For every 25 votes a school receives via the Facebook application, Target will donate a $25 Target GiftCard, with a maximum donation of $10,000 per school.
To pick the schools for the campaign, Target worked with superintendents all across the US to find in-need elementary schools that have shown academic improvement and that have a large number of students who are eligible for free/reduced lunch.
Target has long been interested in education and this campaign is a perfect match for both the company's customers and its philanthropic interests.
Playing out against the recent flap over the Chick-fil-A scandal, Office Depot's campaign looks downright edgy. The retailer has rolled out an array of products that encourage young people to be themselves, ranging from "bravery" bracelets to "empowerment" gift cards. Gaga's foundation will receive 25% of the sales from the products as well as a minimum plege of $1 million.
Of course, kindness is not controversial but some will find Office Depot's choice of partners to be unacceptable. Indeed, one Florida group is already on the war path against the retailer for partnering with a pro-gay cause.
This is a cool campaign, and Office Depot gets extra credit for striking out into touchy territory during a particularly controversial year.
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Photos: Target; Office Depot