Pandemic Brings Philanthropic Marketing To The Forefront

Despite the nature of this uncertain time, so many companies have showed their willingness to help their communities. An extraordinary number of companies, big and small, have increased philanthropic marketing efforts.

Keep reading to see some what brands are giving back and what agency professionals think of all this philanthropic marketing.

Companies Engaging In Philanthropic Marketing


This shoe brand is offering healthcare workers across the country the chance to get a free pair of shoes. In addition to this, they donated an additional 100,000 pairs to be distributed across a number of select healthcare organizations.


This backpack company launched the #UnpackThatChallenge and pledged to donate 10,000 packs to World Central Kitchen. The bags were stocked with food to provide relief to underprivileged students during this uncertain time.

“In general there has been a shift toward messages of appreciation and support for one another as individuals and businesses across the board and feelings of concern for the well being of those around us. This has been infused into most of the messaging that we have developed for clients.”

    – Flint Finlinson, Principal/Agency Director, Propaganda

Johnson & Johnson

Over the past few months, this consumer care products brand has committed a total of $300,000,000 to support frontline healthcare workers with myriad programs.

L’Oreal Paris

This very well-known beauty brand is making hand sanitizer and distributing it for free to care homes, hospitals, and pharmacies across Europe. In addition to this, they’ve also donated over one million euros to those in need.


The department store is mobilizing its team of alterations experts to produce nearly 1 million masks benefitting Providence Health Services, in partnership with Kaas Tailored as well as a partnership with Ascension network hospitals.

Frito-Lay’s Tostito

Sponsored a live-streamed nacho competition between actor Bill Murray and Food Network personality Guy Fieri. It supported restaurant workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, encouraging donations to the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (RERF).

We’ve seen a huge uptick in philanthropic efforts by both large and small brands.  We’ve seen messaging change to a more community-focused, mission-oriented approach and we see brands being more human/relatable and down to earth than ever before.”

    – Shantelle Wasag, Account Director, E29 marketing


They are donating millions of cups of its yogurt to food banks as well as giving out food directly to those in need through its SoHo cafe.


In addition to donating over 30,000 shoes to healthcare workers, Nike has also developed personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers fighting COVID-19.

Ralph Lauren

This brand pledged $10 million to coronavirus relief. Additionally, the company produced face masks, as well as isolation gowns for health care workers. More recently, they launched a contest entitled “Polo Project: Design for Good.” The final design will be sold for a limited time, with 100 percent of the purchase price going toward the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.


The online pet supply has donated over $4 million in free pet food, healthcare supplies, and other essential products to animal welfare organizations all throughout the U.S.

“The tone a brand takes needs to align with their core values and beliefs during good times and bad. Consumers will see through communication that isn’t authentic, sincere or true to the brand.”

    – Carolyn Walker, CEO/Managing Partner, Response


This razor and personal care company is dedicating $100,000 to food banks across the United States to help those affected by COVID-19.


The beauty and skincare company donated 50,000 skincare products to doctors and nurses in New York City hospitals. Learn more about the parent company, Estée Lauder, global COVID-19 relief support in the link above.


Founder and CEO, Sara Blakely has decided to donate $5 million directly to female entrepreneurs to help their business, families, and employees. “The Red Backpack Fund” will immediately provide 1,000 female business owners with $5,000 in funding.


The Coach Foundation partnered with Goldman Sachs and New York City to donate a total of $2 million in funds to small businesses affected by COVID-19.


This company is creating masks, gowns, and scrubs at their production facilities to donate to California hospitals. Meanwhile, their subsidiary company, Old Navy, recently announced they would be donating over $30 million of clothing to American families in need.

“Most of all the hardest hit like restaurants have been quite inspiring.  I often see restaurants shipping as many prepared meals to staff in need at local hospitals. They are truly selfless, and the karma is the wonderful feedback I see so many get.”

Joseph Rothstein, Founder and CEO, Social Media 55


The meal delivery service partnered with Nestlé to donate $500,000 to Meals on Wheels America.

The Home Depot

Early on this hardware store donated its entire stock of N95 masks. In addition to this, the company has donated millions of dollars in personal protective equipment.

New Balance

The athletic shoe company donated $2 million in nonprofit grants to support communities compromised due to COVID-19.


The company has donated $3.2 million to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund and is producing 18,000 3D-printed face shields a week for first responders and healthcare professionals.

MAC Cosmetics

The MAC viva glam fund is donating $10 million to organizations around the world to support communities affected by COVID-19.

A Friendly Reminder

It’s been amazing to see so many brands doing so much good for their community. The companies listed above are just a few making a difference during this time.

Agencies – Please remember that Agency Spotter is here to serve as a resource for you during these uncertain times. Feel free to share these article with your network.

Brands – It’s never too late to show your agencies just how much you appreciate them. Give back to your agency partners by taking the time to leave them a review on Agency Spotter.

How To Leave A Review On Agency Spotter

To leave a review, make sure you’re logged in to Agency Spotter. Then visit the agency’s portfolio page and look for the “Review Agency” button in their Ratings section.

Once client reviews are submitted, the Agency Spotter team verifies the identity and credibility of each reviewer, and only allows those that meet strict criteria to remain published. Please note that only clients of an agency can review them. This can be former or current clients.


¹ NBCNews | ² Fast Company | ³ Insider

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Nicole Schuster
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