Volvic 1 for 10

This is a similar campaign to the Pampers one I spoke about before. I am a big fan of these well thought out partnerships that don’t require people to think too much. It makes sense that Volvic want to help supply water….and as a consumer I feel its what they should be doing, right? I think these are the kind of partnerships we should be looking to get into.  Word of Warning though: We need to  make sure that its not just lip service and allowing a corporate get out of a hole. For example I dont think a Fast Food company supporting an obesity clinic would be the most appropriate partnership to engage in. They have to bring real value to both brands.

This Campaign has been around since March but it just cut through to me today and I heard the ad on the radio. It’s a shame I can’t find the sound file for the ad, but its a great ad. The copy says something like:

You know what its like to be thirsty, your mouth dries up etc…

Ok so there is more copy. The point is, as I was listening my mouth did dry up and I did start to think about water and what its like to be thirsty. Just as this was happening they got to the point of the ad. That is that for every litre of Volvic sold in Ireland and the UK, Volvic and World Vision will generate ten litres of clean and safe drinking water in communities across Africa through the provision of mechanised wells.

This is a great fit, probably even better than the Pampers one. I wouldn’t normally give a brand manager an airing on this blog…. but Kerry O’Sullivan, Senior Brand Manager for Volvic kind of sums it up well

“Volvic and World Vision are both in the same business – providing water…..water is one of the four key practical focus areas of World Vision’s work. Volvic’s contribution wil allow World Vision to provide safe clean water” (taken from World Vision site)

In the UK they have a nice supporting website which you can take a look at here, and the World Vision site has it prominently displayed (why cant the same be said for World Vision Ireland and the Volvic Site??).

P.S. It looks like they do this campaign with Unicef in other markets…I wonder why that is?

10 thoughts on “Volvic 1 for 10

  1. A great supporter of World Vision is AIDtoCHILDREN.com.

    AIDtoCHILDREN.com is a dual-purpose site for building an English vocabulary and raising money for under privileged children in the most impoverished places around the world.

    Check it out at http://www.aidtochildren.com

  2. It is good that the money is being raised. But the reality is that this is about driving sales for Volvic more than anything esle. I understand that they aim to raise about £100,000 for world vision. The advertsising campaign is costing £3m.

  3. I am in no doubt about this driving sales for Volvic. I am also in no doubt that is why partnerships like this work. In fact I applaud Volvic for backing this campaign with that type of spend. I think more companies need to move their thinking about charitable giving to their marketing departments, and more importantly their marketing budgets. How many times have we all heard….our charitable budget for this year is spent! A partnership needs to achieve the goals of all organisations involved, Volvic’s goal will be to drive sales, World Vision’s is to raise money. World Vision would not have that money to spend on a campaign (i’m pretty sure) so with Volvic they are getting, as well as the money raised from the campaign, great awareness, which has a knock on effect that is hard to measure. I think the reality of the situation is if Volvic didnt spend 3million on this campaign they would have spent it on another one, which may not have had the positive spin off that this one has?

  4. As I started – it’s good that the money is being raised. However, there are loads of other ethical water brands that have far better credentials, donate much higher amounts and travel much shorter distances to market. Volvic is buying market share from companies that actually make a much greater contribution. I only drink water that contributes to charity and I know that brands like Thirsty Planet, Frank, Love Oneand Belu that I get from Tesco donate all of their profits. Volviv is making a calculated investment to buy into this but assuming the consumer doesn’t know the difference.

  5. Completly agree with you that the preferrable option is to buy from companies that are founded ethically. I am planning a post on companies that start have started like this shortly, it is hopefully the way forward for companies that are starting up. . I do believe there is room for this, and just because volvic didn’t start as a company whose mission was to donate all its profits to good causes doesn’t mean they shouldn’t try and do something and I think this is a great fit for them and makes sense and is very well executed.

    Just to give a mention to the sites of the companies you mentioned above they are:
    http://www.frankwater.com
    http://www.thirsty-planet.com
    http://www.onewater.org.uk
    http://www.belu.org

  6. I confess that I had a very different take on this campaign, mostly since I dislike the mental bias that it exploits – that the contribution is material. It’s minuscule, with each litre of mineral water ‘costing’ at least the equivalent of 200 litres of water in Africa. See http://gregpye.wordpress.com/2008/04/19/volvic-abusing-cognitive-biases/

    I do absolutely buy the desirable use of the marketing budget, and that it would otherwise be spent on George the rubber volcano. But, I would love it if it were possible to route people to a direct contribution as well as the 10 for 1. And, even more, I’d be intrigued in what it would take to divert say 25% of the UK spend on bottled water to that aim which would yield £500M – enough to make a real difference.

  7. Pingback: Sponsorship is a tricky thing « Conor’s Fundraising Blog

  8. nice bit of debate here. I don’t know much about the water industry but it does strike me as one that is very difficult to differentiate in. One water tastes the same as the next to me. If volvic are doing this as a campaign to differentiate themselves as a ‘caring brand’ to appeal to likes of people like you, me or others on your blog Conor – i’m not sure it will work. As Lotte said, there are water brands that are more pure. If they are doing this because they believe it is right, then I’m for it, but would suggest they don’t advertise it. They are likely to be accused of green washing.

    What did people feel when Innocent did their ‘buy one, get one Tree’ campaign? Same idea but innocent are credible so it feels ok (to me anyway)

  9. Yeh I agree I think they have to be doing it for the right reasons, but at the same time what makes partnerships work is that there are benefits to all parties, real benefits, for a company that is in the space of selling water, that means selling more water. I have to say this campaign made me feel good about Volvic. What I really like about this is that they are putting a marketing budget behind this, for too long companies don’t see charitable partnerships as truly valueable marketing opportunities. I do agree with everyones sentiments though that this has to be done for the right reasons and I get the feeling it is.

    P.S. I think there is a taste difference between bottled waters…I actually cant stand riverrock.

  10. I am very interested in this debate and cannot honestly say i have not decided yet whether or not i agree this form of marketing. Alot can be said about how people (or the corporations for that matter) should simply donate the money. However, I have been looking at all the academic literature available cause-related marketing over the past few months and it seems to be quite clear that in general, it makes a difference and creates ‘donations’ that otherwise would not be made. The biggest downfall that has come with the proliferation of cause-related marketing is that some non-profit organisations seem to be using some of their resources to attrace corporate pertnerships that may never happen, therefore reducing their service to their cause.

    Im actually planning to do some research on consumer scepticism in relation to this campaign. Lotte can you please tell me where you the figure of £3m for the advertising campaign

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