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Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘Trust’

Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘Trust’
Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘#Trust’ One of my most favorite things to say is that people hire brands that they know, like, and trust. Think about it. How do you feel about your insurance man, or the guy who sold you your last car? In all of our lives, there is a salesman that we feel connected to, or a brand that is familiar to us. Making a purchase isn’t just something that we do, it is something that we experience. Managing Brand Equity: Capitalizing on the Value of a Brand Name  When it comes to business and sales, we start to look at things from a different perspective. How do we get our customers to know, like, and trust us? In a recent report, Havas Media ranked the world’s most meaningful brands. Topping the list were companies like IKEA, Google, #Nestle, Danone, Leroy-Merlin, Samsung, Microsoft, Sony, and Unilever. Major brands to be sure, but what is it exactly that makes them so meaningful? Which brands ranked the highest? Ikea Google Nestle Danone Leroy-Merlin Samsung Microsoft Sony Unilever Bimbo Garrett Moon 90% of Americans more likely to trust brands that back #social causes If your brand doesn’t support social causes, it’s missing out on a huge audience. Consumers don’t just like when companies incorporate social good into their business models — they’ve come to expect it, whether it’s through #corporate social responsibility (CSR), cause marketing or “good” content. In fact, 90% of Americans say they’re more likely to trust and stay loyal to companies that actively try to make a difference. #Customer Loyalty: How to Earn It, How to Keep It  Studies also show that 88% of consumers would buy a product with a social or environmental benefit, and a surprising 84% would tell friends and family about a company’s CSR efforts. Brands can tap into this consumer base through original content and social media. After all, 64% of millennials use social media to address companies about social and environmental issues, and 36% of consumers say they mainly share content to promote the causes they care about. But your company needs to be genuine. Don’t underestimate your consumers’ intelligence by simply jumping on this bandwagon. “Causewashing” is a serious issue, and odds are your consumers will smell it a mile away. Matt Petronzio Google Beats Apple Apple is out, Google is in. Google has usurped Apple—leader for three years in a row—on the 2014 BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brand ranking, out today. It has grown 40 percent since last year and has a #brand value of $159 billion. So why and how did Google bump Apple? “It’s a story about two hugely #successful technology companies,” said Oscar Yuan, VP at Millward Brown Optimor. “Apple’s been known for earth-shattering, category-creating, revolutionary products. And I would say just recently Apple’s innovations have been more evolutionary than revolutionary. I think that may have played a little bit in the drop from first to second,” he said. “Google has been doing just the opposite—they’ve been organizing the world’s information and putting it at your fingertips. Even to things as aggressive as GoogleX—they are making WiFi available globally by putting satellites tied to balloons over the earth. [That kind of innovation] does enormous things for the brand—it’s seen as a making-dreams-come-true-type company, and that certainly helps their brand value,” Yuan said. Jennifer Rooney Related Posts: CSR How to Build Brand Value of Businesses? Does Your Company Have What it Takes to be a...
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Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes

Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes
Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes The major focus of corporate strategy is to formulate a method by which any business can adapt to a changing environment enabling to improve its competitive advantage. The corporate strategy theory presents us with the following questions: Where are we now? Where do we want to be? How do we get there? Corporate Self-Analysis The logic is to examine the current status of the business. Areas that come under this self-analysis purview include: Is the business aware of who its stake-holders are? If you are not going to engage your customers or users, then your business becomes product-centric and not cutomer-centric. What are the long-term objectives of your concern? Without a definitive vision how will you ever design and achieve your short-term goals! Does your company have a mission statement? See the mission statement of Mc.Donalds – McDonald’s brand mission is to be our customers’ favorite place and way to eat and drink. Our worldwide operations are aligned around a global strategy called the Plan to Win, which center on an exceptional customer experience – People, Products, Place, Price and Promotion. What are your present business strategies? If your company’s presence is not felt in the market (forget being a market leader always, though that would be the dream spot of all big corporate companies), or your product is not selling by itself, then there has some serious thinking to be done about your present strategies. Focus on what went wrong, try to get inspired by your competitors’ moves (Ha! Its not copying my friend! ), gear up your advertising department to reach the audience. Also try to find out if there are any black sheep in your stay leaking confidential statistics and strategic business moves. Are they simple to understand and communicate to the workforce? If you are not able to pitch your idea to your workforce in a matter of just 15 minutes, then it is very well clear that you are not clear about what you’ve conceptualized. What is the marketplace scenario? Is it in the growth/decline phase? Sometimes it is better to start a business at bad times. Hiring will be easy, cost will be under control and you can experiment boldly because you have nothing to lose. Who might be your biggest competitors? This takes serious effort and planning and ask your core team to do their home-work properly. “Understand that a competitor is created because you are weak”. Review your business internally, look at your business-does it support growth and adaptability to change? This depends upon the leader who serves as the biggest inspiration for people down the line. The culture he has developed plays a big role in deciding this aspect wherein flexibility and employee engagement are part and parcel of it. How effective are your production processes? How well do sales/personnel/marketing/finance sections perform? How well does the business control its internal resources? This is a separate entity and the most crucial element of an enterprise. Expansion in accordance with the demand on one side and keeping up with the technology advance on the other side and what about the third side – the “WORKFORCE” in caps! Tending to the employee morale is the biggest challenge of modern times. HR MANAGERS have to have up-to-date knowledge on the labor laws and government policies on the security aspects of employees. A small case study on the Fast Food Giant McDonalds: U.S. CMO Deborah Wahl, who joined the fast food giant McDonalds company in early 2014, said in a video about the brand refresh that the company will move from a philosophy of “billions served” — a line featured on...
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Tactics or Strategy

Tactics or Strategy
Tactics or Strategy – Ethical Considerations Give a man a fish everyday, his appetite is sated. Teach him how to fish; you have fulfilled his appetite for an entire life time. This is strategy. To make it work, to make the impossible, possible. There is no drawn out template for success or for that matter strategy. But both of them go together when the right strategy is used at the right time and you can bang on your target. Neither the same strategy fits the bill for everybody. Your smart approach to that particular situation backed up by your knowledge and experience does the magic. It cannot be taught, it comes from within when the situation warrants for action. It is more like “Survival of the fittest”, if you want to retain your niche in this business world you act fast and think wise. Tactics: How many of you are bold enough to think differently to make a difference, to make others feel your presence. Never implement tactics which is short lived and don’t make your presence felt either by imitation or by unethical competitor criticism. That will paint a greasy picture on your firm. That is of course strategy but cheap strategy. But always be on the run to know your competitors’ weaknesses and shortcomings which will make you improve your product or service. That is acceptable business practice where competitor spying gives us an edge in terms of identifying unexploited niches of the market. Resort to  Constructive Strategies: Strategies must always be constructive and it assures success in the long run. Tactics or gimmicks will prove to be fruitful only for a short while and that is not your aim also. Will you be satisfied if you are able to sell your product or service as hot cakes only for a season! Is that going to cover your profit margin for the entire accounting year? True, strategies are always associated with making profits, boosting up the sales, for retaining the market share and maximizing the share value. But it should also make your business perennial and viable. Strategic Framework: Many of us forget that strategies are applicable in every activity of a firm that forms a compact framework which gives your business a solid foundation upon which you can build your empire of success without looking back. Right from framing your vision, mission, policies, procedures and programmes including recruitment, selection, training, evaluation and empowering your employees, strategies play their role in giving clarity and direction to the firm.  Long-Term Planning: Although strategies are meant for long term planning, a periodic review and appraisal of the company’s strategies to all the employees concerned is a must to keep them informed. Strategies are secrets but not to the employees of your organization. Strategies are born out of compulsion, a compulsion to survive in the market and have an edge over others. So they must be meticulously planned after brain storming sessions and expert consultations. Sometimes even a small idea suggested by one of your employees might become the basis for a turnkey operation. So keep your eyes and ears open and also be open minded to accept ideas even from the lowest level as they are your pillars of strength and they know the pulse of the market and people better. Strategic Action Plans: Success is not a cake walk, it has to be achieved with great hardships and the taste of success will be sweeter. Strategies are formulated in every step of your business plan, remember it is an ongoing process; you have to revitalize your strategies every now and then to be in the scene, to make...
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Social Value of Corporate Companies

Social Value of Corporate Companies
Social Value of Corporate Companies Economic Responsibilities: Ethical and discretionary responsibilities of a business firm are listed in the order of priority. First, a firm has to satisfy its economic responsibilities, followed by fulfilling legal responsibilities in order to survive in the market. Only then, it can think about or focus on purely voluntary actions pertaining to ethical consideration. In this competitive market situation, a business unit has to concentrate on profit making, the primary motive behind any business activity. However; it is easier said than done. You cannot hit the bull’s eye at the very first attempt. A firm has to become economically stable first; only then, it integrates social commitments in its agenda. Arguments for social responsibility: Public image: Socially responsible firms gain more customers and employees feel proud to work for such organizations. Handling the government regulations with ease: Government is a massive institution with long arms. It seeks to regulate business in public interest. Before government stretches its long arms, businesspersons should discharge their obligations to society. Business is resourceful: With a pool of resources, such as capital, labor and expertise, business is in a better position to tackle social problems and work for social goals. Let business try: It is that many other institutions have failed in handling social problems. So why should not a business enterprise handle social problems? Prevention is better than cure: Social problems have to be handled by the management at some point of time or the other. Problems with labor unions should be handled in a diplomatic way, so that they will not develop into serious social breakdown that consumes most of the management’s time. As a token of gratitude: Business units benefit from society. Based on the commonly accepted principle, that one owes debts of gratitude towards those who benefits us, the corporations have debts that it owes to society. Arguments against social responsibility: Profit maximization is the ultimate goal: Business units are accused of having profit maximization as their goal. Since business operates in a world of poverty and hunger, the economic efficiency of business is a matter of priority and should be the sole mission of business. Society has to pay the cost: The costs of social responsibility will be passed on to the society and the question is can the society bear these additional costs? Lack of social skills: Managers are here to solve economic problems and they do not possess knowledge or skills to provide the right solutions for social problems. Business has enough power: Business already is wielded with enough social power. The society should not take any steps, which will make it stronger. Social overhead costs: Costs on social responsibility is considered a social cost, which will not immediately benefit the business. Why spend money on an object, the benefits of which will be relished only in the future. Lack of broad support: The idea of business involvement in achieving social goals is not widely supported by many groups in society. Business and society are interlinked in many ways and the business has to handle the societal aspects with great care or else it may have to face the consequences arising out of such misappropriation or...
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Social Audit

Social Audit
Scaling Up the Process of Social Audit What is Social Audit : A formal review of a company’s endeavors in social responsibility Social Obligations of Business Organizations: Every business organization has certain social obligations to be duly discharged to employees, government, owners, buyers, public, environment etc. It is a good thing that businesspersons of today have understood their obligations and have been discharging them ably. Social audit scans the scope of the social responsibilities of a business enterprise and evaluates an organization’s social performance. Measure of Social Performance: There are no specific measures established to rate the social performance standards of a business enterprise. Nevertheless, business enterprises do not seem to understand the relevance of social audit because much importance is attached with the economic aspects of a business. The features of social audit are listed down for better understanding of the process: The focus is on the social aspect of a business organization rather than its economic aspect. The activities of a firm that has an impact on the society, such as, environmental quality, consumerism, opportunities for women and other disadvantaged people in the society are taken into consideration for analytical purpose. How to measure social performance of companies? Social audit is confined to the process rather than concentrating on the results of social action. It is quite difficult to measure social performance in quantitative terms. How do you quantify social philosophy of management and human values? Qualitative measurement is also relative, as, what appears right to one person may not be so for another. So a combination of quantitative and qualitative data must be used for the purpose of this audit. If an internal auditor does the assessment, there is this problem of loyalty, which will outweigh all the other shortcomings present in the business. If an external consultant is made to assess the situation, he can analyze the situation with no bias but he will not be familiar with the business activity of that particular firm. Therefore, a combination of both can work out well to carry out the assessment as they can complement each other. A New but Necessary Concept: Social audit is a new concept, so there are not much standard procedures available to follow. Most companies are at the beginning of the learning curve with this process. When companies do begin audit procedures, they tend to find that the process is more complex than originally contemplated. However, every aspect of business and its management has to be explored and analyzed for the benefit of future generations, so as to take proactive measures to tackle problem situations. Business firms obtain their resources from the society and are dependent on the society to sell their produce too. Hence, it becomes their moral responsibility of caring for the society, within their scope and...
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