Has Breast Cancer Product Marketing Gone Overboard?

In our Repost Series, we re-publish classic posts from our archives. This post, first published in October of 2007, discusses the large amount of product marketing tied to Breast Cancer awareness

This month you will be besieged by all things pink…

I remember reading an article several years ago in INC magazine, in which the author eloquently uncovered and discussed the use of the fight against breast cancer and it’s symbols in general as a marketing tool for companies.

Since that time “cause” marketing has become big business and perhaps no other cause has be used in this way more than breast cancer. On one hand, the promotion of “cause” products do help increase awareness. But on the other hand- many companies stand to make a nice profit from the selling of breast cancer awareness.

Personally, as someone who has been directly touched by breast cancer and who has worked with survivors, I think that marketing can be a good thing if it donates real dollars to a cause. I also feel that companies are drawn to breast cancer because of the perception that it is “soft and pink” (anyone who has ever gone through a mastectomy or even a mammogram, understands that “soft and pink” is a total misstatement. It hurts like hell).  Furthermore, where are these companies when it comes to heart disease, diabetes, ovarian cancer, and the many other causes that affect women?

So I have to say “Yea” for supporting the cause, but “Nay” for doing it to make a buck.

What do you think?