Cause and Effect
If you just returned from JCK Las Vegas and had the privilege of attending the Jewelers for Children Facets of Hope dinner, congratulations! There’s a special feeling everyone receives from doing something good and supporting some very worthwhile charities.
What’s more, doing good is often the key to doing well in business. To those businesses that understand the importance of Cause Marketing, I salute you for your efforts. Keep up the good work and think about doing more. Especially if you want to attract Millennials.
Facts you need to know.
Few attributes rouse brand preference and affinity more than commitment to social and environmental issues, and corporate America should pay attention. According to a study done by Cone Communications in 2013, nearly all U.S. consumers say that when a company supports a cause, they have a more positive image of the company (93%) – up from 85 percent in 2010 and 84 percent in 1993. Americans say they are also more likely to trust (90%) and would be more loyal (90%) to companies that back causes. Whether and to what extent a company supports an issue influences a variety of personal decisions as well, including where to shop or what to buy (82%) and which products and services to recommend to others (82%).
In their newest study released in September, 2015 they researched how Millennials feel about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). If bridal is an important segment of your business consider this: Millennials – most of whom have grown up with cause marketing – are leading the charge and virtually influencing the way many companies do business.
Here are some eye-opening statistics:
Affluent Millennials ($100,000 plus HH Income)
- 95% say they would switch brands to one that supports a good cause.
- 51% would actually boycott a company they felt behaved irresponsibly
- 80% would tell friends and family about a company’s CSR efforts
- 87% will want to do business with companies in their own community who do good things.
- 81% are influenced by CSR decisions and where they buy and shop
- 79% are willing to pay more for a socially or environmentally responsible product!
Millennials also want to feel a connection to the issue and the nonprofit organization while fulfilling their personal needs. It’s important to not only communicate giving back to your local community, but why. It’s important to physically be at a fundraising event, volunteering after hours, or even serving on a Board. Don’t get me wrong, donating a piece of jewelry is important. But, it’s also easy. When you relay your own passion and commitment to a cause, the connection is conveyed in ways that simply can’t be measured. Consumers overall, more than ever, are not only asking companies “What do you stand for?” but also “What do you do?”
Lead by example.
Make this a priority in your personal life and business. Communicate the importance to everyone that works in your company. Allow time away from the office to attend events and serve on committees and local charity boards. Support those who get involved with sponsorships for the charities of their choice.
While brands today are looking for a differentiator; are clamoring to find that one thing that sets them apart from the guy down the street, throwing your effort into Cause Marketing makes perfect sense. If you don’t think so, think about a little wildly successful company called TOMS.
Giving is good. And, not so bad for business either.