THE BLOG
08/28/2013 11:20 am ET Updated Oct 28, 2013

Make Good Money

Good money. In the old economy, this simply meant pulling in a lot of cash. But the game has changed. And the notion of good money has evolved.

Globally, 66 percent of consumers believe it is no longer enough for corporations to give money away, but that they must integrate good cause into their business.

Today, in a global economy that is being defined by highly conscious consumers who choose to purchase from companies that are making a positive impact in the world, good money means making money in a way that does the world good.

Which, as the buying trend suggests, actually positions you to make good money in the traditional sense as well. Because 91 percent of global consumers are likely to switch to buying from brands that support a good cause.

Newer companies that have and have had the good fortune of being able to build their business on a green platform or via a technology that improves the world are already in a great position. They have all the pieces needed to operate as a force for good in the business world and need only to weave these together into a meaningful brand. But what about the rest of the businesses out there?

Billions and billions of dollars are being generated and pumped through economies across the globe by businesses that aren't set up to make the world a better place. In fact, a great many of them actually have a history of doing a decent amount of harm.

Knowing that the economy is shifting and this defining buying trend is here to stay, how can these businesses compete? How can they continue to make significant money but now do so in a way that brings about a significant and positive societal impact?

With a double bottom line.

As the name suggests, a double bottom line gives consumers twice the incentive to do business with you. Because in addition to the traditional bottom line, where success is measured by financial profit, there is a second bottom line, which measures success by social impact. How a company profits the world becomes equally as important as how it profits itself. And with that significant repositioning, a brand is suddenly relevant and ready to start making good money in the modern economic sense of the phrase.

Conscious consumers don't just shop with their minds. They shop with their hearts. You have to do more than be the logical choice. You now have to be the emotional choice as well. Which means having a product is not enough. You now have to have a purpose. And not one that matters to you, but one that matters to them.

A good, quality product will give the minds of consumers a reason to buy from you. But it's your social purpose that will speak to their hearts. This more emotional, human connection is the one that will not just draw them to you, but get them sharing your message across their communication platforms. In many instances, it will also allow you to charge a premium price for your offering. Sixty percent of consumers are willing to pay extra for a socially responsible product.

It's important to note that this last statistic identifies a socially responsible product, not a socially responsible company. The two are not the same. One revolves around what the company does. The other revolves around what the consumer buys.

Certainly, responsible brand behavior is the price for entry to succeed in the 21st Century marketplace. In fact, 72 percent of U.S. consumers say they have avoided purchasing products from companies whose practices they disagree with. But CSR has become a garden variety catch phrase that is losing its meaning with consumers through an abundance of use and a lack of follow through or tangible changes in the world we live in.

A double bottom line shifts this. Rather than brand as hero (WE give back on YOUR behalf), it positions a brand as a catalyst, allowing the consumer to make a positive impact in the world with every purchase.

The consumer does good. The brand makes money. Boom: Good. Money.