Innocent ‘Big Grow’: Planting The Seeds For CSR Success
I’ve long since been a fan of Innocent Drinks. Not just because their products taste good, but because their company does good.
As I scrolled through Twitter a couple of days ago, I was greeted with further justification for my favouritism:
We’ve started the innocent Big Grow to get 400,000 kids growing (and eating) their own veg. If you want to get growing, sign up to win a free pack of seeds. You don’t even need to buy a smoothie. https://t.co/MsVzDo7SjB pic.twitter.com/lNBOBXlJti
— innocent drinks (@innocent) May 2, 2018
CSR Done Right
In my view, this is exactly what CSR is about. Such is the strength of Innocent’s reputation, I’ve actually come to expect nothing less. Still, getting these campaigns spot on is a real challenge. How often have corporate programmes and initiatives landed flat on their face, failing to convince senior managers that it was ever worth bothering with?
All too often if you ask me.
That’s a big problem. If companies don’t make a success of it, CSR will soon become harder and harder to justify.
Thankfully, companies like Innocent are proving that it’s well worth the time and money.
The Innocent Big Grow
So what actually is it all about?
Quite simply, it’s a huge push to get children interested and engage with healthy eating. Innocent believe (and quite rightly if you ask me) that children will be more keen to east fruit and veg if they grow it themselves. It’s about making it fun and exciting rather than a dreaded chore.
To achieve this, they’ve teamed up with Grow It Yourself to provide a stream of resources for schools and households. Teachers could claim growing kits and download lesson plans, and households could sign up for a chance to win seeds and a growing guide.
From there, they’re encouraging people to send in their photos and show off all of the great work they’re doing.
From a CSR perspective, it’s genius.
The first ingredient in this recipe for success is their overarching mission. Not only does it directly relate to their company, but it’s very simple, specific and clear.
They want kids to eat more fruit and veg.
That’s literally it.
From there, they’ve come up with a campaign to try and achieve just that.
It might sound odd, but many companies work in the opposite direction. Instead of defining their ambition first, some businesses try and put a social spin on something that’s just convenient for them to organise. In doing so, the social mission is a bit of an ‘add-on’, and it will almost definitely be ineffective.
End Goal Over Ego
In a world where almost every companies claims to benefit society, sincerity is everything. Innocent have achieved this by leaving their ego at the door, and it’s worked wonders.
In essence, they’ve focussed on getting kids to eat healthily without making it all about them.
You don’t need to buy any Innocent products to take part, and they’ve even partnered with Grow It Yourself (GIY), a non profit social enterprise with a similar social mission.
Yet again these things sound so simple, but they’re often overlooked. Many companies try so hard to make CSR benefit themselves, that it almost never works out. On the contrary, when companies prioritise their social mission, they’ll probably do better as a result. It’s a funny paradox.
In a recent edition of my CSR Weekly, I focused on why communication is so essential. Once again, Innocent have ticked the right boxes.
Instead of just launching their campaign and then anxiously staring at their sales figures, they’ve continued to engage with the community.
Whether it’s through sharing photos of school projects and lessons, or simple social media posts, they’ve got it spot on. By communicating so effectively, it becomes very obvious that this is far from a gimmick. This is something that Innocent care very passionately about, and it’s that passion that becomes quite contagious among consumers.
- When CSR doesn’t ‘work’, companies will struggle to justify it.
- However, companies like Innocent are proving it’s value.
- By putting their end goal over their ego, they’ve created a truly sincere and successful campaign.
- These key lessons can be applied to any companies CSR strategy, and success will be more likely.
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Hi! I’m an author and blogger within the fields of social impact and responsible business. I believe that businesses can be a force for good in the world, and this website contains my thoughts on how that can work.