ATLANTA – Activism can mean a healthy bottom line these days, as consumers like to support businesses that in turn support causes they care about, the Washington Post reports. A recent survey by Cox Business discovered that 71% of respondents would buy more at a small business that supported as positive or environmental social cause.
“We are in the era of giving back and social impact,” wrote attorney Chidike Samuelson in the Entrepreneur. “Businesses should face this, and stop using the fact that they are not yet ‘big businesses’ as an excuse for boycotting charitable involvements or social responsibility. Businesses that do this are missing out on the great benefits hidden on the other side of socially responsible companies.”
Businesses that participate in particular causes can recruit better workers, have a positive impact on employee morale and have better brand recognition. But companies should be careful when picking the charity or cause—half of those surveyed indicated they wouldn’t shop at a store if the causes supported “weren’t in line with the consumer’s social and/or environmental views.”
Ways to show support to a good cause include allowing employees time off for volunteer or pro bono work, matching worker donations or participating in fundraising. Last year, nearly half of all business owners said they give to local charities or offer community service in their neighborhoods, according to an Allstate Insurance Company/USA Today survey.