I love being a staff writer for 3BL Media/Justmeans on topics - Social Innovation, Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurs. When I am not writing for 3BL Media/Justmeans, I wear my other hat as owner of Serendipity PR. Over the years I have worked with high-profile, big, powerful brands and organisations within the public, not-for-profit and corporate sectors; and won awards from my industry....
The New Social Twist on Corporate Social Responsibility
There's strength in numbers. Social media provides companies who actively engage with consumers the opportunity to create an army of loyal followers. Building a following and keeping people involved by using a fun, creative way for supporters to participate and share with online friends is putting a new twist on corporate social responsibility, why is why the new social innovation campaign by Lincoln Financial Group hits all the right notes.
Lincoln Financial Group, an essential partner in providing advice and solutions to help customers take charge of their financial futures, is harnessing the power of social media to award an extra $10,000 to the not-for-profit organisation that its Facebook® fans feel best represents President Abraham Lincoln's ideals of education, freedom and opportunity! Nancy Rogers, President, Lincoln Financial Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Lincoln Financial Group says, "The enduring legacy of Abraham Lincoln remains an inspiration to our corporate commitment of expanding opportunities through education. Our five non-profit partners work in communities across the U.S. to ensure that our children continue to enjoy the opportunities originally secured by Abraham Lincoln. We want to engage our broader social community, to help decide the winner of the additional funding by voting on which organisation inspires them the most."
This e-voting initiative ends on 17 May 2013. Lincoln's financial fans can cast their vote for one of five national not-for-profit groups that the company currently supports and they are: City Year; Junior Achievement; Hispanics in Philanthropy; National Urban League and Teach for America.
Another good example of a brand engaging people on-line for a common purpose is the Future Friendly program developed by Procter & Gamble (P&G) in 2009 with a mission to help consumers save energy, conserve water and reduce waste. As part of this social media initiative, it created 'The Future Friendly Challenge' on Facebook which encouraged participation by offering each follower a P&G donation of one day of clean drinking water to Children's Safe Drinking Water; a pledge to commit to saving energy, conserving water or reducing waste for 90 days; a custom app to post participation in 'The Challenge' to their Facebook wall and their friends' home pages and a tool to challenge their friends, send a page invitation and share their 'Challenge' tips with others based on their experiences. Through this simple Facebook strategy, this social innovation initiative generated strong engagement and now has 239,508 likes.
These two corporate examples of positive social media strategies show how brands can amplify their good actions and generate supporters at the same-time. From raising awareness, to connecting with consumers in the way they want to engage shows how fostering positive action, leveraging CSR in the social media world can strengthen consumer trust and loyalty; encouraging followers (and their friends) to take action and participate and put a halo over the brand itself!
Photo Credit: Lincoln Financial Group's Facebook Page