The best marketing of 2010? For me, it’s the Charity category that takes the cake. It’s not an easy category to market, and in many cases, you have to really fight for support and fight even harder for donations. I love seeing the strategies and the ideas they implement to get us to donate our hard earned cash, and Movember I think is definitely the best I’ve seen in a long time.

Movember is an absolute marketing triumph. As a brand, it has achieved absolute cult status. It brilliantly transcends age (other than those under facial hair producing age, or the follicley challenged), socio-economic status, location, and even gender, to create a true mass following. Celebrities support it without being asked to or paid for (although I’d be happy to never see Kochie with a Mo ever again) and businesses align themselves with the event to enhance their own positioning and brand strength.

A great example of a business riding the Movember wave is burger company, Grill’d. If you entered their stores (during certain off-peak times of the day) sporting a killer Mo, you’d be rewarded for your Man-sculpting efforts with a free burger. They developed a marketing campaign around a ‘Grill’d Guild’ oath, with a fantastic adaptation of the Masonic cap-stone symbol (aka the American $1 bill), sporting its very own Mo. Another great series of posters proclaimed ‘a Gentleman never pays for it’. Check out this great video which takes you on a journey through their Movember campaign.

There are Movember events, Movember fashion parades, Movember parties, Movember competitions. There’s even a girl version of Movember, but I’m not 100% sure how that works. I even dug up a ‘Mo Guide’, which you can see as the image for this blog.

The sponsorship system via the Movember website is fantastic, allowing you to send Mo progress updates to your friends and followers, buy merchandise and drive home the Prostate Cancer message. It creates a strange sales promotion relationship between partners, the female campaigning for donations and sending updates, the man working hard on his ‘product development’. Men, the competitive beings they are, compete in workplaces and sports clubs around the world for the highest amount of donations or the most popular Mo. Strangely, it’s about the only event in which exceedingly hairy men can succeed (and absurdly they become slightly more attractive to the opposite sex, which in part I think contributes the event’s mass success).

The marketing people behind Movember really deserve some praise. An absolutely brilliant way to engage your audience, to build a following, and to overcome that all-conquering hurdle for charities: why should I give you my money? As a promoter and avid donator myself, it amazes me that no-one hesitates to donate to Movember. No-one second guesses it, or regrets it, or tries to take it back. For a marketer, this really is success.

See you all in 2011 everyone – be safe!