Despite what the pundits may say, few of us are really certain what 2010 will bring – will the economy bounce back or get worse? Will nonprofits survive or fold under the fundraising pressure? Will the environmentally conscious lifestyle continue to resonate? So instead of predicting the future, we’d like to pause and look back at what has occurred in our portfolio of research – these highlights show powerful growth in just a couple of years for cause-related and corporate responsibility initiatives and may signal a positive outlook for the year ahead.
- Growth in Cause Acceptance: Americans’ acceptance of cause marketing increased from 66% in 1993 to 85% in 2008.
- Growth in Global Focus: Since 1993, there has been a 6% decrease in consumers indicating they want companies to focus on the quality of life locally, within local communities and a 5% increase in desire for companies to support the quality of life globally, in countries around the world.
- Growth in Differentiation: Americans' likeliness to switch to brands associated with a cause increased from 66% in 1993 to 79% in 2008.
- Growth in Purchase: Consumers’ cause purchases almost doubled between 1993 and 2008, rising from 20% to 38%.
- More Interest: 35% of Americans have greater interest in the environment today than they did one year ago.
- Higher Expectations: 35% of Americans have higher expectations for companies to make and sell environmentally responsible products and services during the economic downturn.
- They’re Watching You: 70% of Americans indicate they are paying attention to what companies are doing with regard to the environment today, even if they cannot buy until the future.
- More Interaction: 78% of new media users now interact with companies or brands via new media sites and tools, an increase of 32% from 2008.
- Better Service: 68% feel better served by companies or brands present in new media, up from 57% in 2008.
- Stronger Loyalty: 72% feel a stronger connection when companies or brands are present in new media, up from 56% in 2008.
- Marketing is Okay: Consumer willingness to be marketed to via new media increased a dramatic 72% in one year - from 25% to 48%.
If the past year is any indication of what the year ahead holds, bring it on! As you plan for 2010, what questions do you have? What are you curious about? We’re listening to your comments - please share your outlook below.