Samsung Uses CRM to Support ''Four Season of Hope''

At a gala overlooking the water yesterday at New York City's Chelsea Piers, Samsung Electronics America Inc. launched Four Seasons of Hope, a cause marketing program designed to "support the communities in which we sell," says Peter Weedfald, Samsung's vice president, North America strategic marketing and new media. Four Seasons of Hope is an integral part of Samsung's CRM initiative, Weedfald says. "We have a true passion for CRM, and are using it to help children in a special way," he says. Four Season of Hope is a nationwide philanthropic program designed to raise funds and awareness for four charities that benefit children and families. Each of the charities is run by a sports legend, representing one of fours seasons of sports: baseball, football, basketball, and golf. The charities include the Joe Torre Family Foundation, which provides funding to mothers and their children who have been exposed to domestic violence; the Boomer Esiason Foundation, which works to raise awareness of cystic fibrosis and improve the quality of life for children with CF; the Magic Johnson Foundation, which among its many missions is dedicated to supporting community-based organizations that serve the health, social, and educational needs of inner-city children; and the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children & Women. Four major national retailers (and Samsung's four largest customers) have joined Four Seasons of Hope as retail partners. The retailers-Best Buy for basketball, Sears, Roebuck and Co. for football, CompUSA for golf, and Radio Shack for baseball-will encourage their customers to donate to this program. The athletes will make special appearances at retailer locations throughout the year. To encourage consumers to donate to Four Season of Hope, Samsung is using its prime banner-ad positioning to drive people to fourseasonsofhope.com, the charity's Web site. Samsung currently "owns" 24/7, above-the-fold banner positions on more than 50 Web sites, including caranddriver.com, cnn.com, cnet.com, ew.com (Entertainment Weekly), forbes.com, fortune.com, and premiere.com. These banners generate more than 350 million impressions per month. From May 16 through May 20 Samsung will use these ads to showcase Four Seasons of Hope, and to drive consumers to fourseasonsofhope.com. The Web site itself is colorful and user-friendly, and helps visitors gather information about each of the charities, each of the retailers, and each of the sports legends. Links to the foundations' own Web sites allow consumers to make donations as well as find out how they can get involved with the charities. Samsung will also use a national print campaign, featuring both the athletes and the retailers, which will spotlight the charities involved.
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