[Issue 070] Top 10 issues companies must take action on

 

Good morning beautiful people! 

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This morning my mind is full of data because I spent my evening reading the latest research on consumer expectations for companies.

Here are the mostly unsurprising takeaways for anyone who reads this newsletter:

  • 2/3 of US consumers have stopped using a product or service because a company's response doesn't support their personal views. That number is 80% in the UK.

  • 47% won't purchase a product or service from a company if they believe their actions don't support their words.

  • 61% of consumers in the US and 60% in the UK expect companies to speak up on issues important to them EVEN IF they disagree with the stance. That number goes up to 75% for millenials.

   Live footage of me yelling these stats


Live footage of me yelling these stats

So which issues do people expect companies to address? The report surveyed people about 51 different issues and, these are the top 10:

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Interestingly, the top issues varied pretty widely when you broke the analysis down between millennials, gen x, boomers and the silent generation. "The silent generation (73+) has highest expectations of companies speaking out on the most issues — 16, to be exact. Their top issues with the highest expectations include sexual harassment (76%), minimum wage (68%) and racism (65%)." Dig into the report for more on that!

Here's what I found particularly compelling:  

  • 55% of engaged consumers feel less favorable toward companies that take advantage of issues for their own benefit. That number goes up to 61% for women. Hello, Pepsi! And even Nike for many [ReMake], especially activists [Atlantic].

  • 79% of engaged consumers will continue to purchase from a company if they believe the company is transparent and proactively addressing the cultural, social or economic impact of their product or service.

  • Consumers expect a company to respond to an emerging issue within 5 days. That's a pretty high bar, emphasizing how critical it is for companies to be prioritizing this work before issues become headlines.

I personally loved how they defined "engaged consumer" in the research methodology and wonder how many of you would identify yourselves as such.

You'd be considered an "engaged consumer" if you do at least 3 of these activities:

  1. Searched for information about a company’s products or services

  2. Shared information and/or news articles about a company’s products or services with others

  3. Shared your opinion or offered advice about a company’s products or services with others

  4. Shared your opinion or offered advice about a company and its corporate activities with others

  5. Contacted a political candidate or government office to express your views

  6. Written an article or “letter to an editor” for a newspaper or any publication

  7. Signed a petition in person or online

  8. Contributed to a blog or used other social media to share your opinion on a political or current event topic, or to share your view about a company and its activities, products or services

  9. Bought or sold shares in a company

Even if you don't meet the criteria right now, it's a great place to start if you're looking for ways to hold companies more accountable. While #8 is my primary tool, there are definitely a few on that list that I should start doing.

Hit reply (or tweet me!) and let me know which of those are your preferred ways of staying engaged.

Until next week,
Nikita


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Me: What do you want the people to know about why you are an ABL patron?

Kate: As a budding entrepreneur I turn to Above the Bottom Line on a weekly basis to get a chance to see the world of business through a trained eye and a brilliant heart. Over the last year this newsletter (and podcast!) has helped to teach and reshape the ideas I hold about what businesses can do and therefore, have a responsibility to do. Through the lens of this platform, I have been able to start to shift my life and future business to a more educated and transformative perspective.


 
Nikita T. Mitchell