Insights & News

No Celebrity? No Problem. 5 Successful Campaign Tactics

Cause Marketing Forum hosted its annual conference in Chicago this month, bringing together organizations and people dedicated to living “at the intersection of purpose and profit.” Not only was the conference a great opportunity to connect people supporting relatable causes, we also got to hear about the many great campaigns that are centered around doing good. A few of the most memorable were Jockey Being Family, Safe Kids Worldwide, and Zappos & Best Friends Animal Society.

One common theme we noticed with the campaigns presented during the conference was that many touted having celebrity endorsements to support and promote their efforts, and often it was noted that they did it for free.

While that is fantastic, it isn’t always reality. So for those of you who have a great cause and no celeb, don’t panic. There are a number of ways for campaigns to secure visibility and increase awareness through tactics aside from celebrity endorsements.

1) Assess your assets

What does your organization already have at its disposal? Do you have a great subject-matter expert who already works at the company to be your thought-leader? Is there research that you’ve issued recently? Do you have members or volunteers to share their stories?

While it’s important to think larger than your organization to brainstorm around campaigns, don’t forget to leverage assets – like internal employees, materials or resources – that you already have that can be used to boost your campaign.

2) Identify a subject-matter expert

Celebrities can easily grab the attention of audiences, however, what is great about subject-matter experts, is that they can help keep that attention longer. Subject-matter experts can be just as engaging as celebrities for audiences, cost far less than celebs and can provide real-life examples to make the messages relatable for a particular audience.

Also, subject-matter experts will typically have more time to devote to your campaign. This will allow you to identify other tactics – like satellite media tours, local events, in-person media interviews and audio news recordings – to take your messages even further.

3) Conduct your own research or survey

One of the most important parts of a campaign is making it newsworthy. Of course your cause is newsworthy … but, why now? Research creates a timing hook for your story, provides context and also automatically secures your brand messaging in any article that runs that research.

4) Go local to create national buzz

Never overlook the value of grassroots. Going local can provide ground support, help build influencer network, provide local spokespeople and local angles to your story. When you have a grass-roots efforts in a number of markets, the multiplier effect will build National power faster than you may realize. Another benefit is that you will have personally involved many more people in your campaign, making a lasting impression.

5) Leverage partners

Finding the right partners can add much needed fuel to any campaign. By finding partners that have like needs or outcomes to your campaign, you can pull more resources and amplify the campaign messages. An ideal partner would be an organization that does not compete with you, but instead enhances your message and offers assets that you might not possess. Joint efforts equal more voices to tell a story, reaching a broader audience resulting in more action.

In the end, there are many different tactics to create a successful campaign. It’s important to think about what success looks like and then determine the smartest and most effective way to achieve it.

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