Social purpose is no longer an option for companies looking to connect with target audiences. It’s no longer an add-on, either. As the importance of a brand’s social impact increases for consumers, it equally increases for the brand itself. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is becoming integral to how businesses treat their customers, their employees and their bottom lines.
In mid-January Laurence D. Fink, the CEO of BlackRock, issued a challenge to public sector companies to start contributing to social good. T. Rowe Price released its CSR report in February, detailing how the company’s CSR efforts are extending beyond a singular purpose to affect its approach to doing business and establishing work culture. This kind of integrated CSR is opening new markets while doing more good than ever before—take a look at how Patagonia’s investment in purpose continues to expand its brand.
We asked some industry experts what they think. Here’s what they had to say:
“The recognition of a double bottom line–financial and social impact—has been instrumental in attracting a new class of investors and recruiting exceptional candidates from the current generations. Social impact investing is an idea whose time has come as evidenced by the focus (and financial commitments) from the private equity, venture and angel investor sectors.”
Paul F. LeFort, Retired Deloitte Senior Partner, SVP UnitedHealth, Co-Founder DuPage Impact LLC
“Successful CSR is no longer linear and predictable and it no longer sits under-staffed in the basement. Successful CSR no longer comes in the form of an oversized cardboard check; rather, it is woven into the fabric of a company’s culture, energizing its consumers, employees and the communities they serve.”
Katie Lisowski, Cause Marketing Consultant, Brainshop Marketing LLC
“15 years ago...large foundations and corporations would sponsor educational programs that would be distributed free to schools. Now, every organization, company and foundation has a CSR or other similar budget for these types of programs and those budgets have grown tremendously. The impressions they get through these programs via highly engaged educator communities can be much higher than traditional advertising and marketing and are naturally aligned to social impact.”
Alex Morrison, President, Lynn Street Partners
CarrotNewYork’s President and Founder, Janice M. Hamilton, adds from her 40-year career in CSR, “Corporate social responsibility has been around for a long time—although it wasn’t always called that—but there have always been companies committed to reaching out to children, families, educators and communities to improve lives and make a difference.”
Making a difference is what we do best because it’s what we've been doing since 1980. Contact CarrotNewYork to find out how we can help your organization go beyond “doing good" and make a measurable social impact.