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Data shows Canadians think companies should engage with good causes

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In partnership with Companies & Causes Canada, Ipsos Marketing has been surveying Canadians for three years about how they feel companies should engage with good causes. In the most recent version of this study, they found:

  • 95% of Canadians surveyed felt companies should support good causes
  • Almost half (43%) think that Canadians are more giving than other countries
  • 83% say they would switch brands to one associated with a good cause, price and quality being equal

Corporate giving and engagement with important causes has become a widely-held expectation for Canadian companies as well as a point of national pride.

Consumers surveyed did express a slight difference about which industries they felt should most be supporting causes. Financial services and pharma had the highest expectation with 52% of respondents. Alcohol and quick-service restaurants fell to the lower end of the spectrum with 38% and 35% of respondents respectively.

When it came to companies that led consumer perceptions of supporting good causes, Canadians listed Canadian Tire and Tim Horton’s as top of mind followed closely by McDonald’s.

While cause marketing partnerships with companies can certainly raise much-needed funds, they can also raise awareness. The study found that 33% of Canadians claimed to seek out more information about a cause after becoming aware of it through a cause marketing activity.

When it comes to where those funds should be directed, Canadians want corporate dollars to stay local, according to this research. Only 12% said corporate dollars should be directed internationally; 39% said dollars should be allocated nationally and 49% said those dollars should stay local.

Why are consumers compelled to give their time or money to a good cause? Forty percent said they felt fortunate and wanted to give back while 31% said they felt a closeness to the cause and 25% said it was clear how their support would make an impact.

Ipsos will once again be conducting this critical research about Canadian impressions of companies partnering with good causes. Results will be revealed at this year’s Companies & Causes Canada conference on October 11th in Toronto.

David Hessekiel is President of Companies & Causes Canada and the U.S.-based Engage for Good, which both work to provide best-practice resources to corporate and nonprofit professionals working at the intersection of cause and commerce.

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