Has CSR Become the Next Corporate Gold Rush?
The world of business is understandably cutthroat and unforgiving to those that don’t adopt the newest techniques and trends to stick out from their competitors in an attempt to win over the consumer. In the past these took many forms ranging from giveaways to unique ways of advertising and grabbing attention but now, it seems as though companies have found something that maybe be even more effective at gaining consumer support and respect: corporate social responsibility. Corporate social responsibility (also known as CSR) is when a company actively works to give back to its community and the world by donating time, effort, and sometimes physical goods as a way to build community support and, at the end of it all, gain the loyalty of new customers.
Companies across the globe are latching to CSR and popular causes in an attempt to win larger market shares and boost profits. Causes ranging from the environment to equal-rights are being used in both advertisements and non-advertised CSR engagements as a way for companies to tell the world that they not only care about the same things you do, but that they also willing to put their money where their mouths are by devoting the time and energy to these causes. Companies like Chipotle, Dove, Microsoft, and Patagonia are just amongst the host of others that are promoting their own CSR credentials, as well as actively changing the world we live in for the better.
So does this new appreciation for community and the world we live in lead to better sales and more profit? It seems as though positioning your company as a force of social change and for good in this world is definitely a good way to increase your market share and get your products in front of new customers who didn’t know about them before. Companies like Patagonia have seen massive growth since adopting prominent CSR principles at the core of the company culture and it seems as though taking the long route and focusing on culture and the earth, instead of just profit, is the way to make your company a true world player.
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