Good is the new green
Today, 88 percent of the people believe brands need to do more good, not just “less bad.”² And if many brands have launched interesting CSR initiatives, some take an extra step to become more and more empathetic. Mars Inc. has thus embraced a bold yet necessary move with its Sustainable in a Generation program: a plan delivering on the UN sustainable development goals and the Paris agreement, aiming to do business whilst setting goals in three key areas (people, planet, and well-being). By setting down a new way of doing business, Mars aims at doing “what is right” instead of “just doing what’s better.” Beyond reaching greater business objectives, Mars Inc. is willing to play a more meaningful role in consumers’ lives.
Consumers connect better with brands when they share their values. And honesty has become one key belief to guide a brand’s principles and actions.
Rise in debate
Even if talking politics is a risky business for brands — and sometimes, let’s face it, for people — not engaging in the debate might seem even riskier, especially in a time when consumers are more and more aware that they can vote with their wallets. The airline Ryanair thus dangerously engaged in the Brexit debate in 2016 by offering expats cheap flights to “Fly Home and Vote Remain.” By publicly taking a stand in favor of the remain vote, Ryanair was heavily criticized and accused of breaking electoral law by the pro-Brexiters. More recently the company’s CEO Michael O’Leary has threatened the European Parliament’s Transport & Tourism Committee to cancel flights between the EU and the UK, unless an aviation deal is signed soon. A strong signal sent by Europe’s first low-cost airline.