Here’s a quick, practical example of Super Bowl-sized synergy. Synergy is the collaboration of two or more organizations to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their individual effects.
Synergy works best when it’s just a natural alignment of organizations’ regular activity. When you align what companies are going to do anyway, nobody has to spend additional money and the impact is far greater–exponential even.
Here are seven organizations and their individual goals. Let’s see if they align and synergize:
U2 wants to sell music. They need a big debut for their next album
iTunes wants brand exposure and market share
Red (the not-for-profit) wants to raise money and awareness to get medicine to the poor
Bank of America wants to be the top of mind brand bank to this generation
This generation wants global impact, and, like every generation, they want to feel cool
The NFL wants big, cool commercials during the Super Bowl broadcast
The poorest of the poor need medicine to stay alive
Here’s what these seven separate groups are doing together this Superbowl Sunday:
Bank of America will run a TV commercial during the Super Bowl that will feature U2 and debut their new single “Invisible.” The spot will tell consumers they can download the single for free on iTunes, and that BofA will donate $1 to Red for every download (up to $2 million). Consumers will also become aware of this need and can donate additional funds to Red with the click of a button. Those donations will be matched dollar for dollar by other Red donor organizations such as the Gates Foundation.
It’s good business and contributes to the common good.
The campaign is expected to raise more than $10 million in total to fight AIDS tuberculosis and malaria. Everybody wins (except for the losing team of the Superbowl). It’s good business and contributes to the common good.
My guess is that Monday after the Super Bowl, U2 will easily hit that two million download goal. And, iTunes will gain market share. And, consumers will get free music. And the Super Bowl will get buzz. And, Red will have raised $10 million. And, the poorest of the poor around the globe will get medicine so they can stay alive.
Below is a pitch from Bono on how you can help eradicate this disease. And, remember, you’re helping do just that simply by downloading U2’s new single “Invisible” from iTunes on Super Bowl Sunday.
Here’s another example of synergy and alignment: You can listen to my friend Mark Hall’s new Casting Crowns album, Thrive, for free on iTunes Radio. You can buy it, too, and also read his new book, also called Thrive (published by my company).