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Corporate Social Responsibility in Coronavirus – This is Someone’s Actual Job

By Madison Mento


If you hadn’t heard the term “corporate social responsibility,” or any of its variants (corporate social impact, corporate impact, corporate responsibility, corporate citizenship), before the pandemic, you’re certainly going to hear more about it now.

According to Investopedia, corporate social responsibility (CSR, since it’s a mouthful) “is a self-regulating business model that helps a company be socially accountable—to itself, its stakeholders, and the public.” In easier terms, it’s the obligation of companies to “do good” to communicate to the public that they’re a company that values “doing good.”

We’re seeing CSR public relations – yes, it’s a type of PR – booming during the COVID-19 crisis. All those emails you got for every newsletter you ever signed up for about “what our company is doing during Coronavirus?” That’s technically crisis communications. But have you been seeing a couple of Instagram posts from your favorite brands about how they’re environmentally friendly? Or maybe how they’re donating any profits to shelters and food banks? That’s CSR.

You may be thinking, “is it in good taste for companies to promote their good deeds during a global pandemic?” Actually, yes, as long as their programs are relevant to the most pressing current needs. For example, LinkedIn opened up a handful of its online learning courses to the public, benefitting the now remote workers looking to fill their time (BTW, are you following us on LinkedIn?). Walmart, Amazon and Apple are offering different levels of paid sick leave to employees, along with many other companies.

You can click here for the Forbes list on “50 Ways Companies Are Giving Back During The Coronavirus Pandemic” to see more examples.

Are your favorite brands pitching in? How are they representing their “do good” programs? Let us know in the comments below or tag us in their comments on Instagram @swingagency.

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