Socially Committed Marketing, if implemented in a thoughtful and skilful manner, allows for effective brand strengthening in the eyes of millennials and younger consumer generations. Why? This is mainly due to their values and megatrends. What exactly does CRM give?
What is CRM? Marketing in the era of the conscious, demanding consumer
Socially Involved Marketing is a model in which organizations not only profit from promotional campaigns of their products or services, but also support the activities of non-governmental organizations, charity projects and various types of campaigns focused on a specific, socially important goal.
CRM takes various forms, but they all have one thing in common – the implementation of business goals along with supporting charity in its various aspects.
A form of marketing that combines the features of commercial and social marketing is currently used by many companies, and no wonder. According to Deloitte , the aspirational and image-related values of millennials and younger generations are: responsibility for oneself and others (Common World), naturalness and unprocessing (Return to Nature) and authenticity – following one’s own beliefs (In harmony with oneself).
The consumer decisions of the younger generations are much more conscious than their parents and grandparents. According to an analysis by OC&C , for “Zetek” it is important to defend animal rights, human rights, equality and diversity. The ethicality of the activities of production and service companies is therefore not without significance if we take into account the final choices of recipients.
The effect of this state of affairs is the fact that all the activities of companies are closely watched and analyzed by consumers. It is not only the features of the final product that count, but also the process of its production, working conditions in an enterprise, the relationship between manufacturing and the environment, or the social commitment of business. In the era of fast, almost unlimited flow of information, little can be hidden from the recipient.
Business values resulting from the implementation of Socially Committed Marketing
If an enterprise decides to implement the principles of Socially Committed Marketing, it can count on many business benefits. In addition to the company itself, consumers and the supported organizations / projects also benefit. However, it should be noted that non-transparent, ill-considered and inauthentic CRM activities may become the source of a serious image crisis.
Returning to the benefits resulting from a properly implemented CRM, companies can count, among others on:
- Improve your image in the eyes of your audience.
- Increase in revenues.
- Increasing the involvement of current employees and reducing their turnover.
- Increased media interest in the company’s activities.
- Improving the image in the eyes of potential employees.
It would seem that the positive effects of Socially Committed Marketing are easily achievable and can only bring benefits to the company. After all, it is enough to establish cooperation with a third sector organization, order a monthly transfer for a specific amount and voilà. Nothing could be more wrong.
What to pay attention to when implementing CRM activities in the company?
When preparing for CRM activities, you should ask yourself a few important questions, of which – obviously – there are at least several dozen other issues that require clarification, research and analysis.
However, focusing on the most important elements preceding the implementation of Socially Engaged Marketing elements, one should:
- To lean on the values professed by heavy users of the brand.
- Analyze the company’s operations in terms of these values.
- Put CRM activities in your overall marketing strategy and brand identity.
- Choose the goal / organization that will be a party to the activities.
- Analyze the company’s expenses related to CRM and determine the proportionality of the value of support for the social goal to the company’s profits resulting from the implementation of such activities.
These are, of course, just a few aspects that need to be considered. All CRM actions must be carefully planned and thought out. It is not difficult to imagine a situation in which a company, for example, openly breaks certain types of values, and through its actions CRM tries to “whiten” in the eyes of recipients. Authenticity is currently an extremely desirable feature, therefore such activities may harm the enterprise more than it helps. It is not worth counting on the fact that the recipients of the message and products will be “deceived”. In the era of fast and wide flow of information, all kinds of inconsistencies between the actual activities of the company and the messages it releases, can be quickly exposed and made public.
You should also pay attention to the attitude of the recipients to the brand before commencing socially engaged marketing activities. The better it is, the greater the chance that the action will be successful.
Two sides of the same coin
Introducing socially engaged marketing in a company can create a competitive advantage and positively influence the perception of the brand among recipients. However, it is extremely important to properly plan, implement, and then – perhaps the most difficult – analyze and draw reliable conclusions. Otherwise, it may have the opposite effect to the planned one.