JFC Planning a National Campaign

Jewelers for Children, the jewelry industry’s charity, is looking to expand its mission and its brand image, according to a speaker at The Plumb Club Forum @FIT.

Phil McCarty, chief executive officer of McCarty Partners, a firm that specializes in strategic charity campaigns, said that JFC is planning a national event that would get children involved with helping children in need. He was short on specifics, however, saying that more research is being done this year, but he told the audience at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology on March 2 to be on the lookout for an announcement.

“The industry’s passion for children is well known and well documented,” he said. “(JFC) is now looking at the possibility of building a national campaign which promotes the cause. … A one-day or limited-time-frame event for the children by the children … It will cultivate loyalty in employees and customers.”

McCarty, whose clients include St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a large recipient of JFC funding, made his remarks about the charity initiative during a seminar on “Cause Marketing,” which links for profit organizations with non profits charities to increase company sales while raising money and visibility for a cause.

Quoting survey results, he said that among consumers, health is the top concern followed closely by education, environment, and economic development. Currently, troop support also is very popular.

In addition, according to findings, that with all things being equal, 87 percent of respondents said they would switch to a product or service that supports a cause and 88 percent of respondents said that they expect companies to talk the causes they support.

A total of 72 percent said they would change jobs to work for a company that supports charitable causes.

He added that social issues and causes are critical to younger audiences (87 percent of respondents) and that 73 of respondents values a company that has workplace volunteer programs and provides time off from work to participate.

McCarty said that developing a cause marketing program builds customer loyalty and increases sales. However, these programs must be authentic and have measurable results to be successful.

The Plumb Club Forum @FIT was created to define and spearhead an educational agenda for the jewelry industry, benefiting Plumb Club members and the industry at large. It was held March 2 and 3.

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