CSV is the new driving force behind business sustainability

As simple yet powerful as the statement goes “a company’s success and social progress are interdependent” (by Michael Porter and Mark Kramer), Fimmick’s experiences and gains prove that a business can drive both tangible and intangible values while being socially-minded and purposeful.

Many companies have long practiced some forms of corporate social responsibility (CSR) as part of their sustainability strategies, yet these plans are often considered costly as they are one-off and do not drive profits for the company. There is growing pressure for corporates to beef up their CSR plans to bring more positive societal impacts. Integrating creating shared value (CSV) into the core of business strategy could be an answer to those companies’ prevailing dilemma between maximising profits and doing good deeds to society.

Early in 2015, Fimmick began to explore the values behind CSV and incorporate value creation into its business strategies. Over the years, appreciable returns were seen and CSV has become a driving force to sustainability in Fimmick. The agency offers customised integrated digital marketing solutions, hence focuses on knowledge sharing in terms of value creation. It actively shares experience in industry and school events, and leverages its core competence in digital to help smaller organisations grow. 

Not only has Fimmick seen positive results, the agency was also recognised by other relevant organisations. For example, Fimmick was the first agency to receive the "Business for Social Good Award" from Our Hong Kong Foundation, and Federation of Hong Kong Industries’ "Grand Caring Award" as well as "The Most Devoted Award" winner in Industry Cares 2017. For four years, Fimmick was consecutively awarded the Caring Company certificates from HKCSS. 

Working in the digital marketing field, groundbreaking and leading-edge ideas are highly valued and agencies make efforts to keep up with the latest trend. By closely engaging with the youth, marketers can better understand their thoughts and gain insights into how to reach young target audiences. Fimmick is in the process of organising its very first case competition and has also collaborated with the HKBN Talent CSI Fund to empower youth to address community needs and alleviate social issues. Through these projects, Fimmick aspires to provide opportunities for younger generations to put their knowledge to use and connect with them. marketing interactive online article 20210624 04 50addoilWhile the youth plays an important role in the future, the young-olds and elderly are also a substantial part of the society. In view of the aging problem and fading of traditional cultures in Hong Kong, Eldage, a social enterprise under the Fimmick group, put great efforts into preserving local cultures by documenting traditional elements digitally and operating an e-commerce platform. Fimmick realised how important digital is in promoting local culture and craftsmanship through bridging the hidden supply and demand. Inspired by the engagement with the young-olds and elderly, Fimmick established a digital platform that targets audiences aged 50 or above.

The platform garnered 126,000 followers who enjoy receiving infotainment content prepared by the agency, and among them 26,000 active group members created their own organic content and interacted with other members daily on the platform. The platform has become a channel to collect insights into the needs and wants of the young-olds and elderly, which in turn become valuable data to brands particularly targeting this market segment. The platform is now a major channel to engage the young-olds and elderly, and a common promotion channel for products and services targeting senior citizens. marketing interactive online article 20210624 03 eldage 2

Digitalisation is vital for businesses to ensure efficient response to market challenges and business resilience. Aligning with its vision to help small businesses in Hong Kong, Fimmick has the honour to be chosen to partner with Octopus Cards to launch the Scheme “#NeighbourDood”, leveraging an advertising sponsorship of over HK$1 million to create social media content and do digital promotion for over a hundred small business owners and specialty shops. To ensure that the scheme will benefit qualified merchants, Fimmick will be leveraging its existing network to reach out to potential local businesses.

Rita Li, sales and marketing director at Octopus, said, “Through the scheme, we hope to support even more neighbourhood shops to keep pace with the trend of digital transformation. This will not only increase visibility for small merchants and enhance their competitiveness, but also help people from all walks of life meet their shopping needs”. 

Willy Lai, Fimmick’s co-founder and CEO, commented on how digitalisation can benefit local small shops. He said, “Many local businesses could not stand the test of time not because of the product or service itself, but because the owners are not equipped with branding, content production and digital marketing skills. We have helped bring numerous local shops back to life through digital transformation, truly aligning with our goal to achieve CSV.”marketing interactive online article 20210624 01 coverAlthough CSV can bring positive impacts to society and generate returns for businesses simultaneously, putting CSV into practice is way more difficult than just giving empty words. Fimmick walked the talk by committing to being purpose-driven, constantly contemplating how CSV can be incorporated into its businesses. Under the pandemic, social needs have been intensified and escalated. Thanks to existing clients, who shared the same sets of values, Fimmick was able to look for win-win-win solutions (yes, three wins!) that will bring positive social and societal impacts, while benefiting Fimmick and the clients. 

CSR has long been considered as an integral part of sustainability strategy, yet, sustainable change is even better when made through investment. Do not hesitate to rethink your business model for a more effective way to contribute to society starting from today. 

For more information on Fimmick, please visit the website at: https://www.fimmick.com