Brands are responding to consumer concerns about issues such as climate change and diversity.
Surveys conducted by Mailchimp found that:
- 44% of consumers say they care about the environment more than they did a year ago.
8 in 10 consumers have made purchase decisions based on their values in the past year.
- 46% of consumers say they care more about social values than they did a year ago.
55% of consumers say they are more likely to purchase from a company that shares their values (vs. just 4% who said that wasn’t important).
Of course, it takes more than just a slogan or a partnership to demonstrate brand values. Consumer packaged goods companies, for example, can take steps to make their packaging more easily recyclable or compostable.
But companies need to be careful when they invoke values. A study from the University of Toronto found that when companies cite values in ways that seem self-interested, people grew less willing to support those causes.
A social media post wishing “Happy Earth Day,” from NASCAR, the stock car racing organization, reduced people’s subsequent respect for the annual environmental protection event, compared to a similar post from a group dedicated to ecological conservation. In another study, participants aware of a 2015 “paid patriotism” scandal, where the National Football League was revealed to have accepted money from the U.S. military for game-day flag presentations and the honouring of military members, showed less concern for patriotic displays than those unaware of the case.
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