Good Companies Doing Good Deeds (1,054 words)
by Lois K. Geller
I believe we reap what we sow.
And lately, I've become even more aware of companies that, through their direct marketing programs, are contributing a portion of their profits to charity.
Companies are getting involved and giving because it's a good thing … and it's good for business.
The goal of contributing a portion of profits to charity is to deepen the trust and the relationship with customers, enhance the company's corporate image and drive sales … while providing benefits for a worthwhile cause.
A while back, I came across a study by research firm Walker Information that
found that consumer loyalty was in fact influenced by the social responsibility or irresponsibility of a company. In fact, the study indicated that nearly 15 percent of the population actually seek good corporate citizens when making a purchase. I would imagine that for the remaining 85 percent of the population, when price and quality are perceived as equal, the purchasing decision is based at least in part on what they know about the company making the product—and good corporate citizenship always reflects well on a company.
We sometimes think of companies as friends.
I know that as a consumer, I want to do business with a company that is "caring." I'm working on a book titled, "Friendship Branding," (to be published August 2001), and in it, I discuss how the characteristics we want in a company are the same characteristics we want in a friend.
Being generous, on a corporate level, translates into brand equity, enhanced customer loyalty, and a new way to draw customers to your products and services.
If "The Brand" is everything you stand for as a company, then giving to charity can be seen as a branding strategy. When I see a company that's donating a percentage of its profits to a worthwhile charity, it means several things to me.