Marketing Heads Advise Brands to Engage in Corporate Social Responsibility


The U.S. has a wonderful history of corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Right from Andrew Carnegie’s Gospel of Wealth article published in the 19th Century, requesting for the necessity of the corporate class’s philanthropy, down to Archie B. Carroll’s CSR research in the 1970s, there has always been a need for the wealth of corporations to be used for the good of society, especially of those in poor or unfortunate circumstances.

In 2021, talk of social issues in social media is arguably at its crescendo, and so marketing leaders have advised that brands should consider aligning with various initiatives that serve society and the local community. It is getting more common for companies to assist in matters of public health, disaster relief, and poverty, especially in the West.

Consumers Prefer Buying from a Brand that Cares

Furthermore, consumers are now adamant that the brands they buy from should not only nominally support the same issues as they do, but actively participate in improving and finding solutions to those issues.

A 2020 survey by social media management company Sprout Social showed that more than half of the surveyed consumers and around 65% of millennial consumers want brands to go beyond mere statements. A brand making sympathetic statements on the COVID-19 pandemic is not all that consumers will be satisfied with. They would rather see a brand donate free PPE kits and wellness kits to a pandemic-hit community.

Because of this, CMOs are tasking their marketing departments to use their brand’s platform to not only build social awareness on various causes, but to donate, raise money, align company policies, and create initiatives for them too. That equates to actual progress in the public’s eyes.

CSR Ideas to Reach out to Communities:

A major way that companies can bolster their communities and overarching consumer base is through promo products. Promo products not only aid those in need, increasing the good PR for a company, but also are a medium through which companies can build brand recall through their imprinted brand logos.

Here are 4 broader social issues where brands can serve the community that buys from them.

  • Disaster Relief: There have been several natural disasters in the recent past in the U.S., largely hurricanes and cold waves. There have also been frequent tornadoes in Middle America and earthquakes in unstable seismic regions. In these cases, it is imperative that companies chip in to support the people who have suffered from the effects. They could distribute free first-aid kits or even water bottles to those who have lost their homes or possessions.
  • Public Health Issues: Pandemic issues, such as the recent COVID-19 one, always require a measure of social responsibility to the general public. As discussed, distributing PPE equipment like face masks is a practical way of showing it.
  • Seasonal Issues: Winter, especially in the north of the nation is a serious business. People who do not have adequate heating facilities and those who are homeless are always in danger from hypothermia and other cold-related problems. If it’s winter, brands can donate fleece vests, hooded pullovers, and beanies to the general public, especially the poorer sections of society which cannot afford it and are on minimum wage. You can even throw in vacuum-insulated bottles and tumblers. For the swelter of summer, distributing cooler bags and insulated bottles is a sensible ploy.
  • Shelters for the Homeless and Poor: In general, marginalized people are always extant in society. Companies can do their bit to help them by distributing free logo-imprinted apparel on a monthly or quarterly basis to homeless shelters. The brand recall generated from this is valuable, and the goodwill priceless.

For a thorough understanding of promo products that could serve your local community, contact Promo Direct, who have had decades of experience in the promo product industry. They can aid you in your new CSR campaigns, quickly boosting your brand’s PR in your own community.