In Hubspot and Talkwalker’s recent survey on social media trends for 2021, industry experts said the rise of socially conscious audiences is the number one social media trend.

What does this mean for your company and brand?

Today social responsibility must be part of your marketing strategy.

Social responsibility helps to humanize your brand and shows what you stand for. It can provide you with opportunities for media coverage. Getting good press through doing good works is considered by businesses to be one of the best ways to advertise a company. CSR   It strengthens ties with clients and alumni. It can help with recruiting as well. And it’s just the right thing to do.

Brands and companies of any size can do this by involving employees and launching initiatives and campaigns that benefit their community.

The best examples of socially responsible marketing occur when there is a natural fit between a brand and its socially responsible endeavors.

Your social media channels will need to be more than just a vehicle to disseminate information about your company’s news, events and successes. Use your platforms to have a positive impact on issues of importance to your people and the world in which we live.

Words without action will be meaningless. Companies will need to go beyond lip service on these issues and create real social impact. But always strive to do good for good – not for PR or visibility.

Whether your company uses recyclable packaging, creates awareness of societal issues, or directs proceeds to likeminded charitable groups, the way you talk about what you are doing is very important.

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is essentially an ethical plan. In its most basic sense CSR is understanding the results of your actions within the various communities associated with your brand. It’s about making the ethically and morally correct choices.

How do you implement a CSR initiative at your organization?

  • Focus on being socially responsible and aligning yourself with a few causes that are reflective of your company culture and values. Don’t try to do too much – pick a few issues each year. Maybe it’s veterans’ rights, diversity and inclusion and sustainability. You can’t do everything and being focused will help you be more successful.
  • Create a CSR committee (if you don’t already have one) composed of individuals across the firm and brainstorm ideas on what you can do as a firm to support social causes that can translate into positive, feel-good deeds.
  • Use social media to promote your good works in this area – LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram are great places to do this. These posts tend to do better than any other content. You could create a special hashtag to tag your CSR projects such as #yourcompanynamegivesback or #yourcompanynamecares

Your CSR initiatives can help you in all aspects of marketing, including:

  • Email marketing – there is no better way to directly reach your target audience than by email. Consider creating and distributing a specific e-newsletter to report on your CSR and diversity initiatives.
  • Social media – post positive content with photos that your employees and alumni will want to share because they are invested and excited about the initiatives. Clients, recruits and the media who are following you will of course see these posts – and these tend to be the posts that do the best versus firm-centric congratulatory content.
  • Public relations – pitch stories to local and national outlets who would be interested in your initiatives because of their impact on the industry and the community.

Remember that social media success and marketing success as a whole today is so much more than just pushing out information about your organization. It’s about authentically showcasing what you do to give back to the community and how socially conscious you are. I hope these tips are helpful.