Cause Marketing Success Factors: Staff
Cause marketing is worth doing, but like anything worth doing, it requires work and a dedicated staff. The prospecting and project work associated with cause marketing requires time and a lot of energy.
You might have a current team member suited for this role. But because of the unique skills cause marketing requires, many organizations hire someone or contract out the role. To choose the right person for the job, keep the following in mind:
Most cause marketers are made, not born. You won’t find many people with cause marketer in their title or on their resume. A cause marketer is not like a grant writer or major gifts officer, which are everywhere in the nonprofit world. If you plan to pick someone from your current team, consider someone that has an aptitude and interest in marketing and sales.
Choose the person on your team who has been talking your ear off about cause marketing; she may be a good choice because interest is key. Cause marketing is a fast-changing field, and passion is a prerequisite for keeping up.
Be open to candidates from other industries. Good cause marketers can come from sales, marketing, promotions, retail, advertising, media, and other lines of work. While some of the cause marketers on a team came from the cause world, others will come from media and retail. Their unique backgrounds and skills have help you create and deliver better cause marketing programs.
Hire slowly; fire quickly. Take your time to find the right cause marketer but realize that you may have to kiss a few frogs before you have the right person to lead your program. Hiring someone and then asking them to leave isn’t fun for anyone.
But don’t compound a poor hiring decision by letting the wrong person linger in the position. Move on and hire someone else! Some programs have rocky starts. It happens. But don’t let your program strike a rock and sink.
If you don’t have someone you can directly learn cause marketing from, don’t worry. Examples of successful campaigns abound. Cause Marketing Forum (CMF) has plenty of case studies you can read for free on its website. As shown in the following illustration, CMF also hosts an annual conference, where it presents the Halo Awards for excellence in cause marketing programs. To see the impressive list of winners browse Halo Awards.