Holmes Report Blog

The Holmes Report blog focuses on news and issues of interest to public relations professionals. Our main site can be found at www.holmesreport.com.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Seeing Red: It’s not every new cause-related marketing initiative that makes the front page of one of the world’s great newspapers, so I’m sure American Express, Converse, Gap and Giorgio Armani must already be delighted with the return on their investment in Red—Bono’s new brand designed to fight AIDS in Africa—which attracted banner coverage in the Financial Times yesterday.

According to the FT, Red will first manifest itself through the “creation of an AmexCo Red credit card that will be marketed first in the UK to an estimated 1.5m British ‘conscience consumers,’ who are seen as more likely to buy products associated with a social benefit…. Other Red products available this spring will include Converse sports shoes made with African mud-cloth; a new line of Gap vintage-style T-shirts, in red and other colours; and wraparound Emporio Armani sunglasses embossed with a Red logo.”

"Red is a 21st century idea," says Bono, the owner of the brand, front-man for U2 and longtime campaigner on AIDS and other humanitarian issues. "I think doing the Red thing, doing good, will turn out to be good business for them." (Nice branding Bono, making “the red thing” synonymous with “doing good.”)

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