Does Corporate Philanthropy Instill Consumer Loyalty?

Can corporate philanthropy in the form of social responsibility instill consumer loyalty among customers?

 Corporatephilanthropy.org states that according to the Cone Corporate Citizenship Study, “eight in every ten Americans agree that corporate support of a cause wins their trust.” In fact, to take it a step further, 86% of interviewees said that if the quality and price of a given product are equal, they would switch brands to help support a cause. Even with these interesting statistics, it is still hard for corporate philanthropy to instill consumer loyalty. Consumers’ lack of awareness about a given company’s philanthropic ventures serves as a limiting factor in translating philanthropy into loyalty. Second, sometimes corporate philanthropy can be seen in a negative light, especially if it appears to consumers to be a play for PR (public relations), versus a genuine philanthropic system based on socially responsible principles. The question is how do you tell them apart?

 What do you think? For you, does corporate philanthropy and responsibility instill consumer loyalty among valued customers such as yourselves? Which corporations do you feel best exemplify corporate philanthropy?

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