Ethical Spending Starts Close to Home
8 April 2010 at 4:06 pm
The adage “charity begins at home” appears to be alive and well according to the latest survey by MasterCard Worldwide, which has found Australians are more willing to shop for products that come with an add-on benefit for their local community.
The survey, which examined the spending habits and motivations of Australians, found eight out of ten people were more likely to purchase products from merchants who were known for giving back to the communities in which they operated.
Eddie Grobler, executive vice president for MasterCard in Australia says that many Australian consumers appear to be adopting a new approach to shopping, which was likely to change the way retailers and companies marketed their products and services.
Grobler says there is an emerging trend among Australians who shop armed with both a payment card and a conscience.
The survey also found that four in ten respondents would go out of their way to purchase gifts where a percentage of the sale went to a charity, while nearly half (47%) said they were willing to pay more for such gifts.
Grobler said consumers’ preference for ethical spending had far-reaching potential for retailers and charities hoping to capitalise on the changing consumer landscape.
Companies and retailers which demonstrate a strong affinity to the local community and show they are not only socially responsible, but actively contribute to a cause with a tangible outcome, could reap considerable benefits through increased loyalty and brand awareness.
Conversely, he says charities which are able to successfully link themselves with an ethical product or socially-minded company could see increased revenue and a greater awareness for their cause.
For those respondents who chose to donate directly to a charity, more than a third (34 %) said they preferred to give to local charities. When asked about causes to which they felt a strong affinity, 41 per cent favoured organisations which focused on combating serious illness such as cancer or heart disease and 36 per cent named local natural disaster relief.
The latest survey on ethical spending by MasterCard Worldwide was conducted via online interviews in the fourth quarter of 2009 and involved 3,500 consumers from 13 markets across Asia/Pacific and Africa. Markets surveyed include Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan and Thailand. The survey included 250 respondents from Australia.