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Special Project

Special Project
From the 11th Annual Shorty Awards

U.S. Cotton: The Cotton the World Trusts

Winner in Localization


Cotton Council International (CCI) is the U.S. export arm charged with promoting U.S. cotton, branded COTTON USA™, globally. U.S. cotton sets the standard for quality and grading, but supply chain players didn't understand the value U.S. cotton could bring their business. CCI came to C-K to make U.S.-grown cotton matter. Shifting from B2C to B2B, and decentralized to centralized, in digital communications became critical to driving the premium perception and encouraging more uses of U.S. cotton worldwide. C-K developed "The Cotton the World Trusts," an integrated campaign utilizing localized digital, social and sales marketing to communicate U.S. cotton's value.

This marked CCI's first B2B-centric global marketing initiative. CCI had been running consumer-focused communications efforts across decentralized local operations worldwide. C-K set out to build one global brand and activate a targeted communications plan.

The objective: grow export U.S. cotton sales by X%. *

To accomplish this, we had to find a way for an organization based in the U.S. to begin new conversations with a mill manager in Vietnam, or brand manager in Italy – to elevate the value of U.S. cotton and reinforce COTTON USA as the partner these audiences were seeking. We did it through CCI's first-ever digital campaign built on trust.

*Exact export sales growth goal is confidential and included in the confidential section for judges only.

Strategy and Execution

We identified two audiences, Mills & Manufacturers and Brands & Retailers, drove cotton exports. We needed to shift a B2C strategy to B2B, focusing on these audiences in priority global markets. Not only that, they had different business needs, and CCI had separate objectives for each, so we couldn't talk to them the same way.



We needed a powerful message that would reach two niche audiences in various geographic regions through market-specific flights. We had to think "global" and create multi-channel content to leverage across COTTON USA operations worldwide to successfully educate and connect the supply chain.

Making COTTON USA the go-to cotton provider among the supply chain relied on three strategies:

To successfully implement these strategies, we kept key considerations in mind:

We set out to make COTTON USA synonymous with trust across channels – and markets – worldwide:

We brought digital content to 1:1 communication too, like globally distributed emails, sales presentations and kits for local teams to share in meetings, plus trade show materials for COTTON USA's footprint.


We worked the entire digital ecosystem worldwide, and our marketing efforts have been attributed by the client as a key contributor to helping achieve the objective.

*Exact export sales growth goal is confidential and included in the confidential section for judges only.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

Cramer-Krasselt, Cotton Council International


Entry Credits