A new study from leading cause marketing firm, Cone, has revealed that moms are the most receptive demographic to cause marketing efforts and make the most cause-related purchases. "By all measures, moms lead the way as the demographic most amenable to cause marketing," according to the official press release. Ninety-five percent of moms find cause marketing acceptable, 92% want to buy products that support causes, and moms purchased more cause-related products than the other demographics surveyed. So why is this? Do moms simply have more care and empathy, by virtue of being moms?
"Women by their nature are keepers of the relationships in their lives, at home, at work and in their community. Because of that they are the most receptive to causes that are relevant to them," Carol Cone, Managing Director of Brand and Corporate Citizenship at Edelman and founder of Cone, tells Fast Company.
Engaging in cause-related campaigns or purchases may also satisfy multiple needs or desires at once. "Certainly moms tend to have a strong sense of empathy for social issues and a desire to make the world a better place for their children. Buying a product attached to a cause is an easy way to make a small difference and still check a 'to-do' off the list, and since moms do most of the household shopping, they are most in-tune with brand attributes and see their purchase decisions as a direct reflection of how they care for their families," Cone Insights Supervisor Sarah Kerkian tells Fast Company.
So what about the very thing that makes them moms—their kids? "Their kids are also a big influence—but today, it’s not only begging for their favorite sugar cereal, it’s also about collecting box tops for their school or making sure they can recycle the package," says Kerkian.
But women are not susceptible to cheap cause marketing ploys; Women are discerning, says Carol Cone. "It is important to note that just slapping a ribbon on a cause—the ribbonization of America—a phrase I coined when I was the CEO at Cone, is not enough to inspire a woman to buy, recommend or engage with a cause. The association must be deeper, longer term and have multiple means of engagement." Makes sense, especially when you consider that emotional marketing requires careful planning, studying, and crafting. There are whole groups dedicated to marketing to moms, so let's hope—given the often serious nature of the causes being supported by cause campaigns—that cause marketers more often than not take the time to deeply engage with women on important issues, rather than just "ribbonize" their campaigns.