I find it interesting looking company histories and where successful companies have come from. The first blog I wrote about the subject focused on Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream which was lovely to do as you could really see how being an ethical company can actually be a major part of creating success. Having spent a little time this week looking at Google, I find it interesting that there are a lot of similarities.
Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and Google both had/have very strong social responsibility policies. Ben & Jerry actually used their company as a little lobbying system that brought awareness to the public on all kinds of issues from environmental to political. That’s a pretty amazing thing for an ice cream company to do.
Google runs a number of social responsibility schemes – the main one I like is Google Grants which gives free advertising to non-profit organisations.
Both companies also:
• Give away free stuff – ice cream, searching, sorbet, software…
• Have kept the fun – Google is famous for their April Fool’s Jokes, Ben & Jerry thought up funky names for their products.
• Stay relevant to their customers
• Think big picture and small scale – Global marketing campaigns as well as Google Local / Maps and local charity drives.
• Are constantly moving forward and introducing new ideas.
It’s a little different in some ways, now a large section of Ben & Jerry’s has been sold, but Are you using these kinds of tactics and philosophies in your business? A large proportion of the general public truly love these companies – and are loyal to them. Compare how you feel about these two to two of their competitors Microsoft and Haagen Dazs.
If this is the face of successful companies today, and you like what they stand for, get your thinking cap on. You never know, we could be talking about your early beginnings very soon…
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