If your business wants to capture a loyal audience, you can no longer exist just to sell. Social media permeates our world today, which means showcasing social responsibility is crucial.
On social media, news spreads like wildfire. Ultimately, everyone has now become a reporter to their followers. We share, retweet, and respond to worldwide issues as they play out.
You may have heard the term ‘woke marketing’ being thrown around recently and squirmed in your seat.
However, being ‘woke’ shouldn’t be just another strategy to get traffic. Rather, social responsibility should be visible everywhere.
How do I combine social responsibility and marketing?
You should balance your money-making with actions that give back to society. This is because social responsibility in marketing should exist to gain long-lasting support and trust.
Examples of this could be:
- Making efforts to diversify the voices in your company.
- Combating your business’ harmful impact on the environment.
- Using your influence to spread awareness of world issues.
What’s more, the reason to do these things is not just because they’re right. As today’s young generation exercises their buying power, they’re increasingly voting with their money. Quite firmly, too.
In a 2019 survey, McKinsey found that 31% of consumers in Gen Z (born after 1995) said they would pay more for products if they had a less negative impact on the environment. This was compared to 26% of Millenials (1982—1995), 17% of Gen X (1965—1981) and 12% of Boomers (1946—1964).
Conclusively, brands should focus on attracting consumers who want to make a positive difference with what they buy.
In addition, these people are passionate about what they consume. As a result, they’re more likely to stay loyal to socially responsible brands.
Branding your company in this way can help you attract a passionate and loyal customer base.
It’s important to be vocal about social responsibility in marketing. However, remember that people will be able to tell if it isn’t genuine.
Social responsibility in marketing: how brands are doing it
TALA is an athleisure brand that aims to create their products from 100% upcycled materials. For example, these include plastic bottles and factory offcuts. They state on their website that they are ‘92% of the way there’.
In terms of TALA’s packaging, it is both recycled and recyclable. On top of this, their tags are made from 100% plantable paper.
In their sustainability guide, TALA states that they save 4817 litres of water per tonne of recycled cotton used. This is compared to standard grown cotton, which wastes a whole lot more. In addition, TALA hoodies and joggers are made with Recovertex yarn. This practice saves material from landfill.
TALA combines their ultra-sustainable mission with these techniques:
- On-trend, comfortable fashion design
- Diversity in their models and clothing sizes
- Honesty about their journey
- A candid, identifiable social media voice.
These factors have taken hold on the young and eco-conscious market. As a result, at 9 months TALA made £4 million in sales. Incredibly, this was achieved with a £6k marketing spend and no external investment.
Johnson & Johnson
Social responsibility in marketing has been a three-decade long mission for Johnson & Johnson. The company is a global giant in medicines and pharmaceuticals.
Johnson & Johnson work to provide safe water to deprived communities around the world.
The company also bought a privately-owned energy supplier. In doing so, they reduced pollution and used a renewable alternative to electricity.
They also aim to use 35% renewable energy in their practices.
To shout about these actions, Johnson & Johnson has the ‘A Commitment to Caring’ page on their website.
The page outlines their social responsibility efforts. For example:
- Caring for vulnerable people across the world
- Tackling illnesses like HIV and TB
- Working towards a healthier environment
- Sharing their vision for the next decade.
They also have sections presenting their championing of diversity and women’s rights.
You may not immediately associate these issues with a pharmaceutical brand. However, they have helped Johnson & Johnson to be the influential giant it is today.
Social responsibility in marketing can work for any industry or brand: it’s simply about giving back.
Aardman – collaboration with Greenpeace for Turtle Journey: the crisis in our oceans
[ultimate_video u_video_url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQB4RAZVMf4″ yt_autoplay=”” yt_sugg_video=”” yt_mute_control=”” yt_modest_branding=”” yt_privacy_mode=”” default_thumb=”sddefault” play_source=”image” play_size=”75″ enable_sub_bar=””]
Aardman recently demonstrated social responsibility in marketing by collaborating with Greenpeace.
This animated film was created for the environmental charity’s global Protect the Oceans campaign.
Aardman centered the film around a turtle family to raise awareness of the ocean crisis. Climate change, plastic pollution, oil drilling and overfishing are the main causes.
The film sees the turtle family travelling through the ocean. However, upon arriving home they meet disaster. Horrifyingly, this disaster is a direct result of human activity.
To push the wide appeal further, the animation is voiced by famous actors. These include Olivia Colman, Dame Helen Mirren, Game of Thrones’ Bella Ramsey and Stranger Things’ David Harbour.
The Aardman brand is well known for its dry humour. This is magically combined with stop-motion animation and amazing attention to detail.
They’ve used this in their environmental appeal to great success. For example, they’ve drawn in an already huge audience of fans of Aardman works like Wallace and Gromit.
This demonstrates that you don’t need to lose your distinctive brand identity to be socially responsible. Instead, use it to your advantage and get the message across in your own unique way.
Want more ways to revamp your marketing? Read our other blog posts now.