Newsletter: Raise More Money at Checkout; Valentine's Day Cause Marketing 💝; Best Place to Sell Girl Scout Cookies

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The Chronicle of Philanthropy recently ran an article on raising more money at the cash register. You can find it here, but you probably won't be able to read it unless you are a subscriber. Let me summarize the major points and give you a few additional resources.

1. Checkout charity fundraisers raise big money. According to Engage for Good's America's Checkout Champions Report, 73 programs in 2016 raised a whopping $441 million. Want to learn more? Check out this post: 7 Key Takeaways for Cause Marketers from America's Checkout Champions Report.

2. Children's Miracle Network (CMN) is a powerhouse in checkout charity. They raise 70% of their revenues from it! Their recent program with Ace Hardware alone raised nearly $3 million. We've had CMN on CauseTalk Radio twice. You can access both shows here. You can learn a lot from CMN's Chief Revenue Officer, Clark Sweat.

3. Successful fundraisers make it personal. You have to get employees — and cashiers, in particular — to feel personally connected to the cause. There are a lot of examples of companies that do this well, like GameStopArby's and White Castle.

4. The best campaigns are experiential. For example, when Walgreens raised money for Red Nose Day, they dedicated shelf space to sell swag and encouraged employees to dress up on "Red Flair Fridays." The program ultimately raised $18 million!

5. Checkout charity is changing. Self-checkout, employee-less stores and mobile giving are all changing how people donate at checkout. Nonprofits need to be ready to adapt. And, as Clark Sweat at CMN has said, nonprofits have to ask: "How do we insert ourselves into that?" To learn more on how checkout charity is changing, I interviewed 26 experts on what business giving would look like in 2022.

Will you try or continue checkout charity fundraisers in 2018? Let me know what questions you have!

Top Stories

1. This week on CauseTalk Radio, Megan and I talk to Jennifer Lindenauer, Chief Marketing Officer at Good Media Group about the 2017 merger between viral news and video site Upworthy with media and consulting company GOOD Worldwide. We get an update on the merger and their plans for 2018.

Cause Marketing


1. It's Valentine's Day! Let's face it, either you love the day...or you loathe it. If you love it, via the Bronx Zoo you can send your loved one a certificate naming one of the zoo's famous Madagascar hissing cockroaches after him or her. Cockroaches have been around for 300 million years. Tell a loved one your love will last as long!

If cockroaches aren't your love bug, but you still want to support a good cause on Valentine's Day, send a card to everyone's favorite hippo (Fiona!) and donate to support her upkeep at the Cincinnati Zoo!

If you loathe the day, you can donate all your ex's stuff to Goodwill and wear this sticker as a badge of honor!

BTW, Boston was just named America's ❤️most romantic city❣️

2. A cause marketing leader gets a new presidentGameStop has raised an impressive amount for charities via checkout programs. Megan and I invterviewed Vice President Mike Hodges twice on CauseTalk Radio. The first time they talked about their $1.2 million partnership with Make-A-Wish. The second time, they shared insights on their $1.2 million campaign for Autism Speaks. (I guess 1.2 is GameStop's lucky number!) You can learn a lot about "checkout charity" from these two episodes!


1. Thankfully, Patagonia is at it again. Now Patagonia wants to get its customers actively involved in its advocacy endeavors. The company is launching a new tool through its website that will connect Patagonia shoppers with grassroots organizations involved in environmental work. The “dating tool” lets customers choose their location and then explore local opportunities for events and volunteering in categories like biodiversity, climate, communities, land, and water. The site also allows users to donate money or apply for a grant with the company.


2. Unilever's deodorant brands — Degree Men, Degree Women, Dove, Dove Men+Care and Axe — kicked off a partnership with thrift retailer Savers with an art installation at The Oculus at Westfield World Trade Center in New York City. The 28-foot installation features a female mannequin wearing a massive dress made from repurposed clothing. Of course, as a parent, I see a pile like this every day in my kids' rooms.🤨

3. Last week, people were mad at Party City because of its insensitivity toward people with celiac disease. This week, parents are calling for a boycott of the movie Peter Rabbit because it makes light of a character's food allergy. Sony Pictures has issued an apology. It's a minefield out there, folks. But as the parent of a daughter with a nut allergy, food allergies are nothing to kid around about.

4. I was blown away by a report on Real Sports with Bryan Gumbel on how little support most Olympic athletes receive from official groups and the government. Here's a clip. Companies are helping. True North Collective sells shirts, hats and toques online and donates 25 per cent of proceeds to Canadian athletes who are competing this month. Have you heard of companies that are directly supporting Olympic athletes? Please share them with me!

Help Wanted**

1. Manager, Partner Relationship, Arbor Day (Lincoln, NE)

**Would you like your cause-related job featured here? Hit reply or email me at

Mental Nourishment

Resources to help you to improve or just learn something new and different

1. Creative Education: 5 Questions with Moleskine Foundation President Maria SebregondiFounded just last year, the foundation fosters critical thinking, creative doing and life-long learning.

2. Don't go where the money is. Go where the munchies are! A Girl Scout sold 300 boxes of cookies near a California marijuana shop.


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