You’ve heard about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
“Look at us, we’re committing to environmental sustainability!” – Amazon, full of shit, 2021
Which means you also know a lot of it is just for show.
Consumer trends have dictated the trajectory of CSR and made it a priority, which naturally means that every business is trying – and failing – to jump on the bandwagon.
Unluckily for these businesses, customers don’t only have one braincell and won’t be confused by superficial attempts (cough: lies) to sway them.
The problem here is that customers expect businesses to be addressing these issues.
77% of consumers are motivated to purchase from companies committed to making the world a better place.
So… is your business making the world a better place, or is it chatting shit?
Your business isn’t just your business
People cannot buy so much as a cup of coffee nowadays without considering:
- How much will it cost?
- Will it be good?
- What am I putting my money towards?
In a world full of oversaturated markets, there is no reasonable excuse for assuming that your customer will automatically choose you.
(Unless you’re Google Chrome because who the fuck uses Internet Explorer?)
Customers don’t just care about the cost of something, they care about the implications of it too.
They could benefit from the convenience of Amazon, but do they support the ethics of putting money towards a company with such poor ethics?
Purchasing is now an investment, and who wants to be investing in the likes of Jeff Bezos?
This expectation has created a demand, and this demand has caused businesses to throw all kinds of crap at the wall and hope it sticks, without considering the implications of what they do and how they do it.
What is ‘doing good’ to you?
The concept of ‘doing good’ will vary drastically from business to business and it comes down to purpose.
Simply looking to see what other businesses are doing and attempting to replicate it is unlikely to work because your business has a different purpose, and as a result, different customers.
The main distinction?
You should be taking a stance on wider social issues, rather than only caring about those that impact your profit margins.
It benefits your business, too
It’s not just customers that care about CSR either – employees are part of the growing demand for greater emphasis on CSR.
By 2025, millennials will make up three-quarters of the workforce, and 64% of millennials wouldn’t take a job at a company that doesn’t have strong CSR practices.
Even employee loyalty links to social responsibility.
83% of employees would be more loyal to a company that helps them contribute to social and environmental issues.
Businesses that don’t keep up will simply be left behind, and those that make disingenuous attempts will be in an even worse position.
#ThisBusinessIsCancelled on Twitter, anyone?
Good marketing makes your audience feel something
Does anything get people more passionate than social issues?
Getting together with family at Christmas is a prime example of just how passionate people can be about causes.
(Does Monopoly count?)
Everyone has a cause that they care about, which has untapped potential for so many businesses in terms of generating a strong relationship and building trust with their audience.
CSR isn’t philanthropy, it’s something that is ingrained into the values of a company and the way that they operate.
It isn’t you saying, “Look at what we do, we’re so charitable!”, it’s making an effort all year round because it’s part of your mission, which your customers are also contributing towards.
What CSR isn’t...
CSR isn’t Facebook claiming to value your privacy, or Volkswagen’s claim that they had ‘clean diesel’
Newsflash: these ‘clean cars’ emitted 4,000% more nitrogen oxide than the legal limit
It also isn’t Gillette’s ‘The Best Men Can Be’ advert that alienated nearly every single individual that viewed it, particularly the ‘woke millennial’ demographic they were attempting to target.
Pulling a social justice issue out of thin air based on popularity and suddenly integrating it into a huge campaign isn’t going to work for anyone.
Your customers aren’t stupid.
If the cause isn’t a part of your business, your actions will speak louder than your words in the worst possible way.
You can’t fake a commitment to CSR
“You can find everything out online nowadays!”
Karen has a point.
We don’t just take a company’s word for it, we’ll research them – from their social media to their Glassdoor reviews – and if their ethical practices don’t align with our own, we’ll simply find a business that does.
For many people, it’s a matter of feeling responsible for making the world a better place.
What better way to prove it by being more particular about where our money is going?
It’s about time that businesses listened too.
With that in mind…
We happen to give a shit about CSR, which is why you won’t see us plastering mindless drivel only on national days to show that we care.
Instead, we’re taking part in Forever Manchester’s Ambassador Accumulator Challenge.
Forever Manchester is the only charity that raises money to fund and support community activity across Greater Manchester to help local communities thrive.
They’ve given us £50, and it’s our job to turn this into as much money as possible.
That means that Lightbulb Media’s most in-demand services are being raffled off for between £10-£20!
That’s less than your weekly meal deal spends!
Whether you’re looking for a month’s worth of social graphics or paid advertising training, you can get what you need, for a price you won’t cry over, for a cause that matters. Oh, and you can buy as many tickets as you like – they’re limited to 100 per prize though, so once they’re gone, they’re gone. Click here to get involved.