Solutions: Social Impact

In CSR and cause marketing, measuring impact and providing accountability has become an integral part of both program planning and assessment of value. Post assessment ("how we did") is being replaced by near-real time assessment ("what impact are we having - what do we need to change?") that provides the ability to course-correct and refine. We give the foundations, institutions, and companies the ability to establish metrics upfront and track the impact over the course of their program. Measurement of impact can be achieved at a number of levels:

  • Overall program awareness, and awareness level among various stakeholder segments
  • Program attribution to the sponsoring organization or company and its positive or negative association
  • Change of behavior and understanding of what is (is not) working
  • Impact on influencers (e.g. investors, regulators, media)
  • In the case of cause marketing, assessing the impact on brand image and purchase intent based on brand association with the cause
  • In the case of grants, grant providers wanting to build-in performance metrics (on-going vs. post) as a condition of the grant

Measurement and accountability are essential for non-profit overall, and so is discovery.  Here are a few examples of our work in this space:

Identify barriers and corresponding motivators

An Alzheimer's organization needed to understand the real barriers and issues around families with high disease incidence to taking the DNA marker test.  Traditional research was distorted by respondents saying the "right thing to do for society" vs. their real personal issues, fears and emotions.  Analysis of peer group conversations among a cross section of age and income groups provided valuable insights on how to address and motivate the various constituents and change behavior.

Personify a consumer segment

Another organization wanted to develop programs to help an underserved group - caregivers. Because of time pressure and emotional stress, reaching this group was extremely difficult. Plus, the issues for caregivers varied dramatically by the disease or age of the patient so the representation of each group was essential.  An added issue was the unwillingness of the caregiver to express their real feelings in questionnaires or groups for fear of appearing insensitive. Our analysis of peer group discussions uncovered the real issues and quantified the priority and intensity of the problems so that they could be addressed in order of importance.

Uncover niche segment attitude

Uncovering and assessing attitudes towards health and wellness programs among C-Suite executives was the assignment from this major non-profit.  Traditional research was ineffective because of lack of accessibility, cost (if available) and posturing to follow the "corporate line." We were able to analyze a large and broad sample of conversations among C-Suite executives from their community and peer forums.  This applied particularly to HR executives who communicated in peer group discussions in an effort to benchmark their company's progress or lack of it. This provided strong insights and priorities for this organization in the development of their corporate outreach program.