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Pepsi, Google, Philanthropy, Social Media Style
Source:  ·  January 31, 2011  ·  Excerpt

Much was made of Pepsi Co.’s decision to forgo advertising during the Super Bowl last year. Instead, the company launched a campaign for “refreshing ideas that change the world” – aka, its Refresh Project that would donate $20 million for winning projects.

Pepsi is rolling it out again this year, albeit with some tweaks: voting in some cases was said to be unfair last time around, with smaller and less influential groups complaining that the organized voting by their larger counterparts violated the spirit of the competition. So this year Pepsi is eliminating Refresh Project’s biggest $250,000 grant category, the Wall Street Journal reports, the source of many of these complaints.

Even without the sex appeal of a quarter-of-a-million dollar category, Pepsi is clearly onto something with its campaign.

Charitable giving, especially when adorned with social media elements, has become downright popular with consumers, and a company’s efforts in this area can be just as visible as 30-second spot during the Super Bowl.

Our take
It never hurts to keep an eye on the marketing efforts of multi-billion dollar companies: much can be learned from what works—and what doesn't. Through Facebook and other social media outlets, charitable giving is becoming more convenient than ever for the general public.

While it's best to use such platforms for soliciting small gifts (why ask someone to give $10 when their potential is much higher?), a strategic social media campaign can be a viable, cost-effective option for many nonprofits. Contact us now for help answering these questions and more:

  • Is my community of prospective donors using social media? Are Facebook and other platforms able to reach them?
  • How can my organization identify new, relevant communication platforms and design an appropriate plan to utilize them?


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