Wellness Is ... Being Responsible

>> Tuesday, April 20, 2010

When we think about Wellness, we often think about it in terms of the individual. Things like diet, stress, finances and exercise come to mind. But as I’ve posted before, Wellness is social, and how we impact our community is a big part of our personal Wellness.

Context Marketing recently released the results of a series of 3 surveys they conducted with consumers over a nine month period. The focus of the surveys was to find out if the way a company interacted with the world had any effect on whether consumers bought from that company or not.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock the last five years, I think you can guess that the answer was a resounding “yes.”

More and more these days, people are letting their dollars do the talking. They don’t just want a great product or a great service, they want to support a company that demonstrates through responsible action that it understands it is part of a community.

And we've used this space before to talk about Responsibility as one of the three big themes for Wellness this year.

How important is it to today’s consumer that a company gives back to the community?

“Overall, 70% of respondents in our survey reported that whether a brand or company behaves ethically influences their decision to purchase. Nearly half (48%) said they have stopped purchasing a brand when they saw the company acting in a socially irresponsible or unethical way.”

In the same vein, Ad Age just published an article detailing the way in which a number of companies are making responsibility a core part of their brand. From the Whole Foods “Take Back Our Plates” campaign to the use of reusable shopping bags in Walmart’s advertising, everyone is jumping on the responsibility bandwagon.

But as the guardians of our clients’ brands, we also have to sit up and pay attention. "Responsibilty" is approaching – or maybe already achieving – buzz status. At some point in the near future so many brands will get into the game that responsibility will become just one more level of noise people learn to tune out.

Which means that, like everything else we do, how you choose to demonstrate responsibility must be based in a deep understanding of what your customers care about.

So the next time you’re in a meeting and someone throws out the idea of doing something “responsible,” be responsible to them and their business and tell them it’s a great idea (because it is) but only if you do it right.

Jacob Braude

VP, Strategic Planner


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