Today Apple launched yet another new product – the iPhone 7 in red. “But the iPhone 7 was launched last year, so what’s the big deal?” you may ask. Well, this is just one of the latest branding exercises for a good cause. Take the desirability of a premium product, produce it in a limited edition colour, give all the proceeds to a worthwhile cause (in this case it is RED, an organization dedicated to fighting AIDS) and you have a winning campaign that benefits everyone.
Of course, branding for a good cause is nothing new, particularly in the fashion and cosmetics industry, where limited edition t-shirts and lipsticks are just some of the items that have historically raised awareness of both the brand and the cause in question. Who can forget the fantastic Marc Jacobs’ “Protect the skin you’re in” t-shirt campaign featuring naked celebrities, which raised awareness of the dangers of skin cancer?
However, it’s not just charities, or products that benefit from the CSR aspect of marketing. The toothpaste manufacturer, Colgate, recently launched a clever Snapchat ad encouraging us to turn off the water tap when brushing our teeth to coincide with World Water Day. If brands can raise money and awareness that potentially help us all, while raising their profile at the same time, it’s a win-win situation.