Millennial consumers are appealed to differently than others. Statistics reveal that a whopping 92% of millennial consumers prefer purchasing products from a company with good ethical practices. A further 82% of those people are also of the opinion that ethical companies are outperforming other competitors in the industry that lack ethical principles. An Aflac survey came to these two findings and more as they investigated the impact on business that ethical marketing had. This study in corporate philosophy revealed that consumers value brand authenticity, and never before has it been so important for the success of a business as it is today. Companies that have taken the leap to offer more for the greater good have seen returns in the form of a surge of revenue and support. Let’s dive into ethical marketing and look at how a couple of companies have found success with this corporate philosophy.
Ethical Marketing: What It’s All About
Ethical marketing is a corporate concept that makes reference to the process of companies marketing their products or services by placing focus on both how their products or services are beneficial to the consumers as well as how they are beneficial to environmental or even socially responsible causes. So essentially, ethical marketing is less of a strategy and more of a philosophy, which covers honest and reliable advertising through to building sturdy relationships with consumers through shared values. Business who adopt ethical marketing philosophies evaluate their company decisions from a business perspective and a moral perspective.
A fantastic example of ethical marketing is TOMS ballet flats. These shoes appeal to consumers because they are comfortable and cute, but also socially conscious. The corporate philanthropy the TOMS company uses is a core element of the values and the brand of the company itself. It is a company founded by Blake Mycoskie, after his visit to Argentia in 2006. He had experienced the lifestyle of the impoverished in some areas of Argentina and particularly to how some people had to live without shoes. With this inspiration, Mycoskie established the TOMS company with the gift of giving at the fore. The company has since donated over 60 million pairs of shoes to poor children across the globe. The TOMS eyewear division ahs also gifted over 400 000 pairs of glasses to the visually impaired who cannot afford ophthalmological attention. TOMS now diversified its reach to include clean water initiatives and an initiative for birthing kits for expectant mothers.
The clothing manufacturing industry has been under fire under recent i=times and is one of the most controversial industries across the globe. Over the past two decades, a lot more attention has been placed on how clothes are being made and where they are being made. This was exacerbated by tragedies that occurred across the world, like the manufacturing facility blaze in Bangladesh that claimed 117 lives as recently as in 2012 – this factory-supplied Sears and Walmart with clothing. Everlane is a company developed to bring change about how we make and view clothing. The company was founded by Michael Preysman in 2010 and all the company’s items are from factories that operate under the most stringent of quality standards in both quality of the product as well a the treatment of workers and the work environment. Everlane also partners with other companies that share their core values of a strong commitment to the welfare of their workers, and the company prides itself upon this. The company is unique in that it even offers consumers a detailed cost breakdown of every item, including labor costs, material, and logistics costs, excise taxes and duties and the hardware like buttons and zippers. Now that’s transparency!
There are hundreds of brands of soap on the shelves, and that’s no exaggeration. However, there happens to be consumer demand for cleansing products that are ethically produced. While many brands have come into ethical marketing and adopting corporate philosophy, few are as unique as Dr. Bronner’s, an organic liquid soap brand sold in America. The brand is particularly unique primarily because of the founder’s eccentricity. This is an iconic product and its packaging offers the firm’s philosophy in its ‘Moral ABCs’ printed all over the label. Dr. Bronner’s is a B-corp, or Benefit Corporation, which means it is a company that has a positive impact both on society and on the environment according to goals as defined by the law. The company raises awareness of environmental and social justice issues, uses USDA-certified fair-trade ingredients at every possible chance and has equitable payment structures limiting executives to pay that is five times that of lower-level employees.
Businesses of every sector and completely different from one another can have shared values. All businesses involved in corporate philosophy are committed to both giving back and to committing to the livelihood or the rights of vulnerable people in the world. Companies are beginning to embrace ethical marketing not as a sales gimmick but as a genuine integral core of their company values. This is a welcome shift in the business sector and one we have high hopes for!