Why Corporate Advocacy and the Bottom Line Do Not Have to Be Taboo

Erin Smith • October 7, 2021

Corporate Advocacy or CSR efforts should be tied to the company’s bottom line to ensure effective and meaningful engagement that supports all stakeholders involved. It’s not widely accepted that a company’s CSR efforts or their support of societal issues should be tied to their bottom line. But ultimately it should. Good corporate advocacy should be directly tied to advancing an organization’s mission and vision or else it might not be meaningful.

Corporate advocacy looks very different today than it did 10 or even five years ago. Today, it’s about being impactful and taking action. The 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer (2021 Edelman Trust Barometer | Edelman) reported that out NGOs, government, media, and business – business was seen as the most trusted institution, and 86 percent of respondents agree that CEOS should lead on societal issues.  Consumers want companies to be active corporate citizens and those brands that do it right can build a strong and loyal brand following.

Here are three tips to creating a corporate advocacy program that will build brand loyalists:

  • Be Authentic. Identify organizations and issues to support that mean something to you and the mission of your company.
  • Leverage Community Partners: You don’t have to do it alone or be the smartest person in the room. Identify partners that are aligned with your cause and efforts to help move the needle on the issue.
  • Engage Your Employees: Your employees have bought into your mission and culture and should be aligned with your community efforts. Having a visible presence (not just financial) on your cause is extremely important. You don’t want to be seen as just throwing money at an issue. Added bonus, it will help with employee retention efforts too!

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