Tuesday, September 6

Citgo Fueling Good

Let's face it, the oil companies don't exactly have a great reputation in this country, and it's really hard to differentiate one brand from another.

bp tried by going "beyond petroleum" but that got pushed aside.  Shell has tried with numerous promotional offers, but I'm not sure that their efforts have created any brand loyalty.  Several brands have tried by offering better service but I can't remember any of them so they must not have been too successful.

A surefire way to differentiate?  Give back!

9/11 got us all to think much harder about giving back to our communities, and consumer research bears out that a brand's charitable efforts have become a much bigger factor in our loyalty.  I guess the folks at Citgo figured this out and have created a program called "Fueling Good."  It's a comprehensive program to donate gas to charities to help them accomplish their missions, 24 charities to be exact.  Complete with an advertising campaign, point of purchase materials, and an unbranded website.  It's not overtly branded, but you certainly know who is behind it all.

This is not a new program, and it smacks a little bit of Pepsi Refresh.  But it is really good, especially from an industry criticized for not caring much in the past.  When you scroll through the nominations, you can read about their work and even share it with friends.  The content is quick and easy to understand, and is designed to spark interest and get you involved too.  It's very well done.

I love when an industry attempts something "new" ... it's made me think differently about that brand!

I guess in some ways gas can be good ... what's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President of Lippe Taylor
Author of The Experience Effect

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