Why the Olympics failed to medal with Conscious Consumers

The 2016 Summer Olympics wrapped up this past weekend and like many Americans, you probably watched some or maybe even a lot of the coverage, so much so that your family and co-workers are sick of you claiming that Team Handball could really take off here in the U.S., especially if LeBron James would take it up. Seriously, check out these highlights. Team Handball is awesome!

In case you didn’t notice with those highlights, I couldn’t embed a YouTube video or share a SportsCenter highlight with you, as the only place with official highlights showing off Olympic Spirit at the Games is at NBCOlympics.com. The concept of Olympic Spirit is actually very similar to the ethos of the Conscious Consumer. As listed on the International Olympic Committee’s website, the mission of Olympic Spirit is:

“To build a peaceful and better world requires … Read More »

Shareholder value v. Corporate Social Responsibility

Earlier this summer, I heard an interview with John Browne, former CEO of BP. He had released a new book that discusses the importance of corporate social responsibility (CSR) to a company’s bottom line. His argument is that CSR is no longer a “program” or a separate effort from a business’s core competency, but is a necessary component of a business model. In his words, “In many cases, thinking about a business’s relationship with society is changing strategy, not just being incorporated into it.”

Coming from an organization like BP, which experienced one of the most severe public relations crises in history following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, Browne is an unexpected spokesperson for CSR. For that reason, he’s just the right person to get the attention of corporate leaders and boards of directors.

Browne’s message beats the same drum CCF does: companies … Read More »

Three strategies to use with Conscious Consumers

It’s hard to believe that we’ll soon head into our fourth full year of blogging on Conscious Consumers, but next month that’s exactly what will happen. In that time we’ve covered a lot. As I look back there are three things that immediately come to mind when I think of what have my takeaways been from all this study. Those three things are Focus, Coaching and Relapse. Let’s break them down


Let’s face it, most marketers do not have what I refer to as “Ford Truck” budgets, so we have to prioritize our efforts based on bandwidth and dollars available. “Where will you see the most impact from the dollars you have?” is the question you should be asking. Or as a former colleague used to ask me, “Rob, if you had one dollar is that where you would spend it?” … Read More »

How to make Conscious Consumers feel rewarded.

As marketers, we understand the many ways to motivate consumers into action. Often that motivation is centered on a reward that is usually focused on a tangible outcome like a lower price, a rebate, a rewards program or the incentive to buy early or buy again. These types of programs have worked for many years to drive loyalty and brand preference especially for Consumer Packaged Goods companies and retailers. These programs can definitely provide short-term gains. But over the long term, the competition often ups the ante creating a downward spiral of heavy discounts – eroding the real value of the product and service. It’s a difficult hole for companies to climb out of and extremely difficult to make increased profits year over year.

Enter the Conscious Consumer. As we’ve uncovered in the past few years, Conscious Consumers are a disruptive … Read More »

Cause Marketing, Conscious Consumers and Loyalty

I’m a Conscious Consumer and a fan of Shark Tank. So imagine my excitement to see a “moral brand” — a brand that helps out with a good cause — in the tank. That brand was Bombas, a sock company that gives a pair of socks to a homeless shelter for every, yes every, pair sold.

After first seeing if the marketing agency I work for could help Bombas (they already had an agency AND Daymond John), I bought many pairs of their socks for me and for gifts, as well as had our family donate pairs to the homeless locally.

This was all before I had put a pair on.


Not only were the co-founders, David Heath and Randy Goldberg, great salesmen on Shark Tank, but their values and the values of Bombas — gratitude and giving back — matched mine. That’s the … Read More »