Why Brands Should Care About Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

What is Corporate Social Responsibility? Known as CSR, it is a business approach that contributes to sustainable development by delivering economic, social, and environmental benefits for all stakeholders. And it starts by starts with an awareness of who you are and what you believe as an organization.

In the 20th century, we knew this was true. But for the most part, we ignored Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

Famous economist Milton Friedman’s philosophy was the accepted norm: the sole goal of business was to make money. Corporations impacted our world, but they were encouraged to ignore the consequences of their actions.

Nothing mattered except the almighty dollar.

Business Opportunity

Only ten years ago, less than twelve Fortune 500 companies issued a CSR or sustainability report but now, the majority do.

With the millennial workforce on the rise, business leaders are more likely to make CSR a priority with 65% of MBA’s surveyed say they want to make a social or environmental difference through their jobs.

Visa is a great example by creating new markets in the developing world by closely aligning social causes with their overarching corporate strategies.

As a credit card company, Visa’s core business motive is to get people using credit cards. The more people who use credit cards, the more people can use Visa cards.

This profit motive dovetails nicely with an altruistic one: financial inclusion.


“Visa’s global network is a powerful platform to advance financial inclusion. By bringing people into the formal financial system, we improve lives, foster opportunities and strengthen economies.”


In many developing countries, people have a hard time exchanging money. Scarce internet access, a lack of banking facilities, and overall poverty come together to make cash-only lifestyles a necessity.

This leaves people without the financial instruments required to start businesses, make investments, and so on.

This was the perfect cause for Visa, so they pledged to offer payment accounts to 500 million people who didn’t have access to banks.

Visa’s pledge was good for business and the world.

Why Corporate Social Responsibility Matters

Finding ways to link your business goals with your surrounding community is an excellent way enhance your overall company brand and reputation because simply put, CSR is important to customers.

With a growing global workforce, it can help drive employee engagement and reduce employee turnover by 50%. The use of social media is an effective method to showcase your company’s commitment to be known as a leader in CSR.

It is also a great way to attract and keep valuable talent. According to a Deloitte survey, 70% of millennials say that a company’s commitment to the community has an influence on their decision to work there.

Relan Wrap Up

Are you ready to take a stand for what you believe? It’s not complicated: you can have a positive influence while making money in business.

We have years of experience helping companies achieve their sustainability goals and become more eco-friendly and we can help yours too. Contact us to let us know that you’re interested in eco-friendly marketing products and we’ll take it from there!


Get more ideas for your organization about the benefits of using upcycled marketing products by subscribing to the Relan Blog!

relan blog

Kari Brizius is President of Relan and is a West Point Graduate, certified personal trainer, US Army Veteran, and a wholehearted entrepreneur. Kari’s passion for the environment, the planet, and healthy living fuels her entrepreneurial spirit. Her mission is to provide thought leadership on sustainability initiatives surrounding healthy living, the environment and sustainability messaging.