Cheerwine’s Legendary Giveback

An institution in the south since 1917, Cheerwine is looking to raise brand awareness on a national scale while still maintaining its brand ethos.  Towards that end, it recently sponsored a “Legendary Giveback” concert in Charlottsville, VA.

At face value the concert was pretty basic fare for a corporate charitable event: visiting celebrities, all proceeds go to charity. But the real attention-getter was the structure Cheerwine built around the concert: Fans were asked to pledge volunteer hours with one of Cheerwine’s chosen charities (Big Brothers Big Sisters, Operation Homefront and the University of Virginia Children’s Hospital) or a charity of their choice. There were rewards for pledges including free streaming for individual pledges and a concert viewing party for the town that pledged the most.

Cheerwine enabled this by harnessing social media to reach audiences outside their regular sphere of influence. Portland, OR, which is not even a distribution market for Cheerwine beyond perhaps some specialty stores, pledged the second highest amount of volunteer hours in the country. In total, the pledge drive resulted in promises of over 30,000 hours of charitable service.

At TippingGardner, we know it is a pretty basic tenet of social media that a company’s reach and influence is no longer tied to geography or size.  It is refreshing to see a brand use this dynamic to such good effect.


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