The millennial generation values ethics. They want to work for a company that supports local or national organizations. They want to use social media as a platform to advocate for causes that they hold close to them. Most importantly, at least from a marketing standpoint, millennials want to support brands and products that serve a greater purpose than profits.
For millennial consumers, it is not enough for a business to offer the newest, sleekest, and price-conscious product. A company that stands by an ethical value is more likely to attract consumers that support this as well. Adding a moral value to a business will set that company apart from the competition, and will enhance consumer loyalty to the name.
Corporate social responsibility – or CSR for short – is when companies take it upon themselves to integrate practices into their business model that are beneficial to social, economic, or environmental factors. These practices place value behind the products or services that they offer while building credibility and loyalty with consumers. Furthermore, many businesses take CSR one step further and encourage their employees to participate in their efforts and causes.
From a marketing perspective, businesses can also benefit financially from adopting CSR. Studies have shown that consumers are, more often than not, actually willing to pay more a good or service if the company’s values align with their own. If they know that they are helping to make a difference for a cause that they care about, whether locally or globally, the price matters less than the moral justification.
Some examples of corporate social responsibility marketing techniques include:
- A brand utilizing recycled packaging
- A company that donates a percentage of profits to a charitable cause
- A business that teams up with a nonprofit organization
- A company that hosts events to build awareness of a cause or organization
Ultimately, a business’s marketing tactics should tie to their CSR. While raising awareness for a product or service, the company is also raising awareness for the issue in which it supports. A company is taking it upon itself to inform consumers of their adopted values. A consumer should feel as those they are supporting your cause while deciding to do business with your company.
A company should center their marketing campaigns around their core values, and integrate the moral cause within their brand. While profit sharing may result in a lower profit margin, the brand credibility gained by incorporating corporate social responsibility has invaluable benefits.