Has the “Buy One, Give One” Buzz Faded?

A few years back lots of entrepreneurs pitched themselves as the “Warby Parker of X.” Many of those pitches even emulated Warby’s “Buy a Pair, Give a Pair” program where they’d donate a pair of glasses to charity for each pair they sold. But now when someone tells me they want to be the “Warby Parker of X” it usually refers only to a vertically-integrated private label brand in a stagnant, traditional industry that tended to raise prices faster than quality – for example, Casper as the Warby Parker of Mattresses. What happened to the social good component of one for one?

Warby had this baked into its DNA, not just as a marketing gimmick – it’s even a B Corp to support this aspect of social benefit. My guess is that the other startups couldn’t make a cultural or economic argument in the same way. TOMS was the first company I recall popularizing the concept and there’s a number of other small companies which have tried similar.

Folks who’ve followed the retail sector and social benefit corps closer than I have: was one for one an idea that heated up and ran its course, or are companies today still launching with this promise?

One thought on “Has the “Buy One, Give One” Buzz Faded?

  1. Pingback: The benefits of doing good - Create and Wonder

Comments are closed.