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Category: Cause Marketing

Recent Settlement Highlights Charity's Duties in Commercial Co-Ventures

Recently, an Agreed Final Judgment was entered in Tennessee state court following an action by the Tennessee Attorney General (in conjunction with the AGs of 16 other states) against a TN charity concerning issues raised over a commercial co-venture program involving donations for teddy bears purchased to provide care...
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Things That Make You Go Hmmmm

Commercial Co-Ventures and Sweepstakes Promotions Remember that song in the ‘90s from the C+C Music Factory called “Things That Make You Go Hmmm….” I guess I did when I came across some recent promotions. Perhaps these practice tips will stay with you longer than C+C’s 15 minutes of fame...
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How Can They Do That? A Question Many Commercial Co-Venturers Love to Ask

Advertising lawyers when giving advice to clients on promotional programs and advertising disclosures are always asked by their clients, why must we do it that way when XYZ company isn’t? The answer is usually somewhere between I don’t know why XYZ company is doing it that way and XYZ...
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What Do You Need to Know about Commercial Co-Ventures?

Join me this Friday, February 16, from 1:00 to 2:30pm to learn the specific legal issues that are arising within commercial co-venture campaigns. With many companies today engaged in cause marketing, including commercial co-ventures in which a portion of their sales are donated to charity, it is important to...
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Here's a Form to Use to Create a Commercial Co-Venture Program

“Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.” From the French for (roughly): there’s a form for that. Answer these 17 simple questions to create your own commercial co-venture program: 1. What is your company’s full name, street address, URL and contact. 2. What is the Charity’s full name...
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Commercial Co-venture Registration: Things You Should Know

When embarking on your first foray into commercial co-venture land, you may have learned that a commercial co-venturer has to register in six states. But how much do you know about what that entails? Here’s a primer: ALABAMA (Ala. Code § 13A-9-70) See here Annual registration: 1. Complete the...
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Commercial Co-Ventures: What a Charity Needs to Know

Yay! Big brand wants to team up and donate part of the purchase price of its sales to your charity. Do you just have to sit back and watch the money come pouring in? Procedurally, no; substantively, (mostly) yes. Even though the “work” in a commercial co-venture may be...
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Should Your Company Engage in Cause Marketing? Here's What Consumers Think

Cause marketing is good marketing according to a recent study . The marketing research firm Toluna conducted a survey of 1,000 U.S. adults and here’s what they had to say: Almost half felt that “it’s a great way to bring attention to different national or global issues.” Over half...
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The Three Dirty Words A Company Involved in Cause Marketing Doesn't Want to Hear

George Carlin had seven dirty words. Spongebob Squarepants had 13 bad words (7 regular/6 sailor). And New York State has 6,942 dirty words that can’t be used on vanity plates. But commercial co-venturers should be aware of three dirty words: Professional Fundraiser, Professional Solicitor, and Fundraising Counsel, because if...
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Tapping Into a New Method of Cause Marketing

What do you do when your esteemed institution of higher learning has an alma mater which, in the words of one professor, could be interpreted as being “complicit with racism”? You do the right thing and engage the community to fix the injustice. This is exactly what Harvard University...
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Guidance From Commercial Co-Venture Caselaw: A Unicorn of a Topic

There are not many court decisions concerning commercial co-ventures. In fact, there are perhaps five. This is far less than the number of decisions involving unicorns (seriously). Nevertheless, these few court decisions provide some guidance on how a court may look at claims involving alleged violation of commercial co-venture...
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Let's Review Some Tricky Commercial Co-Venture Issues

From a quick Google search I see articles citing “at least 22” states have commercial co-venture laws; “over 30 states have laws governing commercial co-ventures”; “currently 27 states define ‘commercial co-venturer’ in their solicitation laws”; “about 20 states” have commercial co-venture laws. You get the point. This can be...
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Giving Tuesday: An Opportunity to Market for a Cause

I’ll admit that I’ve been part of the people lining up in the wee hours of the morning waiting for the doors to open on Black Friday. I even (temporarily) lost my young son once even though I specifically instructed him to run toward the tv’s. Luckily, my wife...
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I Wanna Help: Cause Marketing for Tragedies

A good brand’s reaction to any human tragedy is to try to find a way to help. Most recently, we have seen an outpouring of support for the Orlando victims, and we can recall the many millions of dollars raised for Katrina, Haiti, Sandy Hook, 9/11, among, unfortunately, many...
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Cause Marketing Lessons from the Wounded Warrior Project Scandal

Your company just made a major announcement that it is partnering with a charity that you now find is involved in a scandal. What can you do? The recent ousting of The Wounded Warriors Project CEO and COO amid allegations of lavish spending on travel, conferences and public relations...
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Cause Marketing by the Numbers - What's In It for Me?

There is a common belief that corporations must do everything with an eye to producing profits for shareholders. But that is not so. In fact, in its opinion in the Hobby Lobby case, the U.S. Supreme Court stated: “Modern corporate law does not require for-profit corporations to pursue profit...
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Cause Marketing Can be a Force for Change

Today (Dec. 18) is the official release date for the long-awaited next installment in the Star Wars saga – The Force Awakens. Disney and the Star Wars group have already been been engaged in an over one-year long cause marketing campaign that has been out of this world. For...
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10 Things You May Not Have Known About Promotion Marketing

Practically every type of promotional activity is regulated in some way: Sweepstakes and contests User generated content on websites and social media; Coupons, gift cards and money-back guarantees; Charitable solicitations; Celebrity endorsements or other testimonials; Marketing to children; and Even trying to give something away for “free” 2. You...
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What You Need to Know About Commercial Co-Ventures

Commercial co-ventures are a form of cause-related marketing that have proliferated in recent years. Commercial co-ventures between a company and a charity not only help charitable causes, but also tend to increase a company’s bottom line. Indeed, market studies have shown that most people will opt to purchase a...
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