DQ1: The concern of marketing in regard to legal and ethical representation of the company is completely warranted, since more and more often consumers tend to alter their buying behaviour based on their perception about the company. Thus, if consumers believe that a company is using unethical practices, they will boycott its products. In the modern world, the variety of products and brands give consumers an enormous bargaining power, therefore, negative company image may cost the company profitability or even jeopardize its existence. Realizing the tight competition in the market, companies use marketing as the primary tool to target their customers and to convey an ethical and legal company representation. If they are successful, they are likely to gain more loyal customers and to create a positive image, which would contribute to sales increase, profitability and growth.
DQ2: The New Belgium Brewing Company in Colorado emphasizes ethical culture as the core element of its marketing strategy. People there believe that company’s actions should be synchronized with the brand promise, creating more than just a set of codes and regulations, but a company spirit, which embraces ethical behaviour. New Belgian Brewing Company’s values were outlined much before a marketing department was even created, therefore it is possible to suggest that profitability was not the only aspiration of the company founders, but they also aimed to balance stakeholders’ needs, to emphasize environmental care and social responsibility as well as to ensure continuous improvement. That is why the company won the Business Ethics Award from Business Ethics magazine for its commitment to ethical principles (Ferrell, Fraedrich, and Ferrell).
Feedback1: Your comment is totally valid, since the importance of brands is growing continuously nowadays. Thus, the more people associate themselves with the brands, the more emphasis marketers will put on brand image.
Feedback 2: You are completely right about the increasing consumer expectations, therefore companies indeed should put more effort into providing product information with integrity and not to deceive customers by giving false promises.
Feedback 3: Based on your response, Co-op Inc. can really be called a role-model for ethical and legal marketing, since they put so much effort into continuous assessment of business practices, social responsibility and employee relations.
Ferrell, O. C., John Fraedrich, and Linda Ferrell. Business Ethics, Ethical Decision Making And Cases. 8th Edition. Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage Learning, 2010.
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