5 Great CSR Pages That You Need To Check Out

If, after reading about why it’s so important to highlight CSR on your website here, you’re not convinced that Corporate Social Responsibility is the right fit for your business, perhaps this will sway your opinion:

The Reputation Institute, a private consulting firm, invited over 40,000 consumers across 15 markets to participate in a study in an effort to rank the world’s most reputable companies. The study not only found broke ground in terms of discovering purchasing habits, it also found that willingness to buy is driven 60% by consumer perception of the company, with the actual products or services impacting only 40%.

Can you imagine?

The better the reputation, the greater chance of consumer purchasing. Which means that, instead of focusing primarily on your company’s product or services, it’s time to pay close attention to your reputation. Corporate Social Responsibility leads the way in developing and enhancing reputation, making it more important than ever to tell your story online.

We’ve developed some impressive CSR pages over our years working in Investor Relations, so we’ve done our fair share of research into great CSR pages that our clients have drawn inspiration from.

Which is why we’re sharing them with you now.

If your business is focused on enhancing the reputation of your company, and driving revenue while you’re at it, below are 5 great CSR pages that you need to check out now.

 

1. eBay

great csr pages ebay

Why we love it: It’s transparent.

With eBay’s CSR page, all information is transparent – which means that the end consumer is not left feeling confused or unsure of eBay’s CSR goals, impact and practices.

eBay clearly displays their CSR focus through their website; the website is easy to navigate, and it is mobile-friendly – two important features of any CSR page.

2. B2Gold

great csr pages b2

Why we love it: It’s interactive.

This is the only bias on the list because, well, we made it.

We love B2Gold’s CSR page because it’s interactive. B2Gold.com features an interactive map with their holdings around the world, which gives visitors to the site an opportunity to navigate through a Global map and learn about production, development and exploration sites. It’s truly a leader within the industry.

3. Whistler Blackcomb

great csr pages whistler

Why we love it: It’s mobile-friendly.

This is a must for any CSR site, and Whistler Blackcomb does it well.

Not only is the site easy to navigate and straight-forward in terms of the information featured, it’s also mobile-friendly, meaning that it is responsive on every platform we’ve tried here in the Blender office. This makes for a seamless experience for the end user.

4. Microsoft

great csr pages msn

Why we love it: We’re swooning over the design…

Microsoft’s creative and design teams are heroes in our books. This CSR site is clean, mobile-friendly, easy to navigate and transparent, all-in-one.

When landing on Microsoft’s CSR homepage, the focus of this company is clear – Human Rights and Environmental Sustainability. There is no lack of clarity, and the minimalist creative is simply stunning.

5. Mastercard

great csr pages mcard

Why we love it: It combines various mediums.

From video to photos, news stories to social media, Mastercard isn’t afraid to combine various mediums on their CSR site.

After just two scrolls on the homepage, visitors can consume a video on global financial inclusion, which is a focus of the company’s CSR goals and objectives.

We love seeing companies incorporate various mediums on their CSR site, and Mastercard is doing it right.

 

Don’t be boring.

If we can emphasize one key takeaway, it’s this.

CSR is meant to be fun. It’s meant to showcase the strengths of your business, while enhancing your reputation in the marketplace.

When designing and developing your CSR site or pages, remember to keep them interactive, mobile-friendly, and informative.

And, when testing, ask yourself this question: would I want to scroll through this site? Would I be interested in consuming this content? If the answer is “yes”, then give yourself a high-five. You could make our next “great” list.

 

The ‘Nog Problem: Starbucks Quickly Reacts After Social Media Uproar

This week, we’re bringing you an example of a public company that read the lay of the land when there was a social media uproar, and quickly reacted to ensure their customers and shareholders continued happiness. Nowadays, social media is a great way to take the temperature on a company business move. See what investors are saying about you, and always keep an ear out of things like this!

Who knew this little guy could cause so much drama: 

 eggnog-latte-600x800

Last week, Starbucks Coffee got into a little hot water of their own but quickly hopped out again after demonstrating both an attentiveness to social media feedback and a quick response to waves of negative comments. With the launch of their  annual ‘red holiday cups’ last week, complete with their first new holiday drink in 5 years, Starbucks (and the rest of the world) prepared for the predictable onslaught of internet excitement over the return of the famous red cups and seasonal drink regulars.

Well, the internet freaked out alright. But not in the way Starbucks anticipated.  For this holiday season, the coffee company had decided to discontinue their famous ‘Eggnog Latte,’ leaving it out of the rotation in favor of their new drink. According to Time.com, “Starbucks had dropped the seasonal drink…in an effort to streamline its menu”.

Immediately, there was a social media uproar. 

Countless complaint letters were written and phone calls were made, along with hundreds of scathing tweets and comments on the company’s Facebook page. Everyone demanded the return of their favourite holiday drink.

It looked like people were out for blood. Instead of ignoring the complaints and attempting to further promote their new holiday drink, Starbucks quickly reacted to the feedback and immediately brought back the EggNog Latte. Linda Mills, a Starbucks representative, announced soon after:

“We received passionate feedback from our customers talking about how much they love our Eggnog Latte on social media, through MyStarbucksIdea.com, through letters and via phone calls.These messages were emotional and personal…We heard them and quickly acted.”

This tweet quickly went out only hours later:

What’s more, Starbucks didn’t only fix the problem, they also profoundly apologized to their customers. Says Laura Mills,

We made a mistake…We are very sorry…Starbucks has learned its lesson.

The fact that even a corporate giant like Starbucks admitted that they always have learning to do sat very well with customers, who praised the company’s fast response. This move by Starbucks wasn’t the first time they reacted lighting-fast to criticisms. A few years ago they attempted to reintroduce some of their cakes in loaves instead of slices, but quickly changed them back after numerous complaints. USA Today writes,

For retailers in the social media era, instantly responding to consumer gripes is critical. Quick action is especially critical for Starbucks in the holiday season, by far its most profitable period…One corporate branding expert says that Starbucks knows what many companies still need to learn. ‘All companies need to become more nimble to respond to this kind of feedback…customers can use social media to tell you more about what they want. It’s a new way of test marketing’“. 

Although Starbucks responded to the customer frustration with promises and cheer, that didn’t mean it was easy for them to bring back the EggNog Latte. USA Today notes that “Starbucks hopes to have the drink back in all stores by the week of Nov. 17…the problem is quickly getting enough eggnog from suppliers”. Though it may cause a temporary headache for many at the company, Starbucks showed that it was willing to change original plans if those plans didn’t go over well with customers.Flexibility is key, in any company, as an idea that may seem like a hit might not sit well with the masses. With an ear poised towards the social media conversation, Starbucks was able to swiftly fix the problem and ultimately come out on top. 

Chevrolet Embraces the #ChevyGuy Mishap and it Pays Off

This week, we’re giving you an example of how a seeming PR nightmare can actually be a great opportunity for your company to show their smarts. After the World Series, a very nervous Chevrolet representative seemingly butchered his speech. Instead of sweeping the mishap under the rug, Chevy transparently and effectively communicated with their audience. Read below for some inspiration when it comes to re-thinking your own investor communication!

If you haven’t heard of it already, well, this is the poor Chevy Guy:

His name is Rikk Wilde, and during his sweaty and flashcard-accompanied speech, he probably didn’t know he was about to become an internet sensation. The Chevrolet regional zone manager bumbled through his minute long speech of presenting MLB World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner with a new Chevy Colorado. His most memorable moment came when he attempted to describe the new car:

“Um, it combines class-winning and leading, uh, you know, technology and stuff with, uh, Wi-Fi powered by OnStar, sitting there on the screen…”

Yeesh. Seemed like a pretty embarrassing moment and a bad hit for Chevrolet.

But it wasn’t. The internet blew up with responses. Some were horrified, but most were just amused. Jokes sprang up everywhere. AdAge writes, “Within an hour, ‘#ChevyGuy,’ ‘#TechnologyandStuff’ and ‘#Rikk Wilde’ were among the top 10 national trending topics on Twitter”.

And what did Chevy do? They ran with it. Only hours after the interview, they tweeted this picture, incorporating the hashtag #TechnologyAndStuff.

They also added #TechnologyAndStuff to their homepage and the Chevy Colorado page on their website:

technologyandstuff

Business Insider writes that, “One day after World Series, Chevy edited the end of their new commercial for the Colorado. Instead of ‘you know you want a truck, the all-new Chevy Colorado,’ the voice at the end of the commercial now says ‘the all-new Chevy Colorado, you know you want a truck … and stuff'”.

The internet LOVED the company’s lighthearted response, and applauded them for sticking with their guy:

And the ChevyGuy didn’t just provide Chevrolet and GM with some good stories. According to a Bloomberg report,

“Chevrolet, the official vehicle of Major League Baseball, has received at least $2.4 million in media exposure from Rikk Wilde’s unconventional presentation, much of it on social media, according to sponsorship evaluation firm Front Row Analytics. That’s six times more than the $392,000 it would have brought in with a more polished performance.”

Way to go, Rikk!

Re-imagining the Repetitive: 2 Airlines Make Old Content Seem New

It’s a tale as old as time. The somewhat forced perkiness of the stewardess in an airline safety video, reminding everyone aboard a departing flight of the necessary safety information. The talk on the video could just as easily be white noise. Instead of listening, we use this time to check last minute emails, send off a quick text or two, and contemplate the in-flight food packages, wondering if we’re willing to spend $35 on a protein and cheese plate But what if that boring, mandated in-flight safety speech was completely rethought and redesigned?

Cool story bro, how does this relate to me?

We love bringing examples to you of industries that are find new ways to engage with their target market and reimagine the way they communicate with their network of customers and peers. See how United Airlines and Air New Zealand are reinventing the wheel when it comes to reporting about airline safety, and use this as inspiration in your own investor communications.

 

Fly, you Fools!

Air New Zealand has always been ahead when it comes to making engaging and unique videos, but they recently became Lord of the Safety Video with this ‘Middle Earthean’ take on in-flight instructions. The safety video also features appearances from famous Lord of the Rings figures, including Elijah Wood and Peter Jackson, as well as a handful of other stars.

 

Safety is Global 

United Airlines fused airline safety instructions with clever, everyday situations, taking passengers to Paris, Las Vegas, and  even inside a yellow NYC cab.

Both airlines also came up with a uniquely visual way to display the plane’s safety exits. While we’re all used to seeing this image:

 

Enerjet-New-Seatmap-2014-updated-mar-28-2014

 

Air New Zealand demonstrates exit rows with a rowdy army of Middle Earth orcs:

r0_3_1393_787_w1200_h678_fmax

 And United Airlines turns to origami as a stewardess ‘folds’ paper into a perfect rendering of the current plane before explaining the exit plan. 

plane

Both these videos remind us of the possibilities in re-imagining old content  and presenting it in ways where it is both more engaging and successful with viewers. They also show us that to be creative or inspirational, you don’t always have to come up with new words; approaching the same content a different way can be equally inspiring. This is especially interesting when thinking of public companies sharing their story with investors. How can mandated content be spun a different way?

These airlines make sure to include the necessary info, such as the locations of flotation devices and the proper way to secure a life-mask, but give it a completely fresh delivery. Words that have been repeated hundreds of times are suddenly made current again. Even if you’d rather zone out for the minutes before departure, these videos capture your interest and make you pay attention.

Is your IR Website too “cookie cutter”?

Seeing how social media is booming, it’s easy to forget that social media is just a supplement to your website, and not a substitute. The investors who actually care about your company are the ones who will come to your website. Think social media as a tool that helps you disseminate information, and always remember that website is the home of your digital branding. Ask yourself these questions, and figure out whether your IR website is an effective online presence to investors or just another “cookie cutter” webpage:

Does the website provide unique content to help investors better understand your company? A successful website would provide investors with information that will help them make investment decisions. Unique content might include corporate presentations, investor videos and other financial details. Enrich your website with unique information that’ll allow investors to better evaluate the company!

Is it easy to navigate? Will investors be able to easily locate information? A simplified and intuitive design is best when it comes to corporate websites. Web design is not just an art, but also a science. You’d want the design of your website to be modern but most importantly, the design needs to be functional. And be sure not to overlook mobile optimization, if your website is not viewable on other screens, then investors will have no access to your website when they’re on-the-go.

Do you update corporate information every quarter? The key to any communication strategy is updating and managing content on a regular and frequent basis. Unique content needs to be current and relevant in order for investors to make decisions. Let them be investor presentations, news releases or periodic reports, keep them updated!

How does it look? Does it reflect your corporate branding? Take a look at your competitors’ websites; does your website stand apart from your competition? Does the website communicate your company’s goals and initiatives? It is absolute critical that your website is unique and that it’s consistent. Images should be relevant to your content and your brand, and there should be a consistent color scheme throughout all pages. You wouldn’t want any unnecessary inconsistency to muddle up with your corporate brand.

Does it provide effective two-way communication? By making your website more interactive and easier for communication, your company is more likely to stand out and be less “cookie cutter”. Reaching out to investors with social media integration or giving them the option to fill-in their contact information will encourage them find out more. A good communication system on the website will help foster relationships and build trust – it can only personalize your brand!

Here are just a few questions to give you a brief idea of how effective your IR website is. It’s best to perform a detailed website audit once per year. It’ll give you better insight on how your website is doing in the different components (design, lead generation, SEO etc.), and allow you to identify ways to improve it! Let us know if you need our help, we’re always here @BlenderMedia!