I almost forgot to post this — here is the third of three sessions I blogged at the recent CMO Thought Leadership Summit here in San Francisco. This post can also be found at theCMOClub.com. This one was another round table.
From Sponsorship to Co-Creation for Education and Causes
- Matt Yale – Deputy Chief of Staff, US Dept of Education (via Skype)
- Stefan Weitz – Director, Microsoft, REDU
- Michelle Kydd-Lee – Exec Dir CAA Foundation (Creative Artists Agency)
- Moderator: Mark Bonchek – Social Architect
Education is one of the most serious problems facing our country today. Serious enough to move moderator and parent Mark Bonchek to tears. And as Michelle Kydd-Lee responded, “Being emotional is what it is all about.” And thus the question was presented to us: how can a room full of CMOs help Americans understand and respond to the need for teachers? How do we address the drop out rate? Education is a product and people aren’t buying.
Over the next few years we will need 1.6 million teachers to address population growth, replace retiring baby boomers, and fill already empty teaching spots across the country. The greatest need is for African American men, but all kinds of teachers are needed. Without a strong education system the country is in trouble. Even if you don’t like kids and don’t like schools, you should care about the future of the country.
Bing, in the form of REDU, has partnered with the Department of Education to begin to reach people. Michelle and the CAA Foundation is working with them to include celebrities to help raise awareness. But more effort is needed.
As has often been said, doing good is good business. Bing has gotten strong repeat traffic as a result of REDU. Delta partnered with Habitat for Humanity and customer loyalty and employee retention both went up.
The request: What could you, or your organization, do to help make people care? All ideas, suggestions, and participation welcome.