07 December 2006

Some things can’t be measured in dollars and cents

In every marketing plan I write I always make a point of encouraging the business to become more involved in their community. I outline the importance of being a good corporate citizen and the fact that consumers these days want to deal with businesses that are actively involved in their community.

Some business owners just don’t get it. They ask questions like “how much free publicity will I get” and “how many new customers will it get me” or “how much will this add to my bottom line”? Some things simply can’t be measured in dollars and cents and community involvement is certainly one of those things. I can’t tell you how much more money it will make you, but I can tell you there are a lot of consumers out there making very conscious decisions about where they will spend their money. Given the choice between spending it on a business that plays an active role in the community and one that doesn’t, what choice do you think they will make?

Apart from that concept alone – what about doing the right thing and having integrity. We all need to think much deeper than simply returns on investment. Even the largest organizations in the world have realised this and they are going to great lengths to show the world that they have corporate compassion and corporate responsibility.

That is why I have no problem with businesses that promote themselves as being actively involved in their community and in fact I recommend that they do it. If it means that the community wins – that is all that matters. We are all charged with the responsibility of making the world a better place.

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