HomeDissertation:Creative BtoSforS Communications in an Age of Sustainability

Creative BtoSforS Communications in an Age of Sustainability

Conclusion: Remaining Issues

Konosuke Matsushita, the founder of Panasonic, established the concept of “the company as a public entity of society” as his management philosophy and disseminated his company’s social character both inside and outside the company.The social value of a company is said to be its sociability or, when it grows larger, its character as a public entity. Corporate value cannot necessarily be seen in business-oriented financial statements alone. Sociability is abstract, and appreciation differs depending on the recipient, so it is necessary for a company to communicate matters for which it wishes to acquire approval in a prioritized and easy-to-understand manner. Gaining approval for these communication activities is a major issue facing BtoSforS communications.

Corporate communication activities are part of a company’s business operations and must be managed. In order to achieve the goals and objectives of those activities, it is necessary to solve problems and manage them so that plans are drafted and efficiently implemented, in other words, by rotating the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle.

Cutlip, Center, and Broom state that public relations is a process comprised of four problem-solving processes that are continually overlapping one another and circulating. These processes are “defining the problem,” “planning and programming,” “taking action and communicating,” and “evaluating the program” (Figure 3). “Public relations” can be replaced here by “corporate communications,” and the description applies to BtoSforS communications as well.

Practically speaking, the hardest part in implementing this process is “evaluating the program.” In a Keizai Koho Center survey, of the issues that worry public relations departments, “Measuring the effectiveness of public relations activities is difficult” scored the largest response at 68.7%, followed by “We have few personnel for public relations” in second place at 45.4% and “Our budget for public relations is small” at 31.8%. The results were just about the same in previous surveys, so this can be seen as a long-term trend. Advertising included, it is unavoidable to an extent. But nevertheless such communications are a part of business, so companies must not neglect their efforts to constantly check their programs. The setting of goals that do not rely on individual judgments like spur-of-the-moment ideas and likes and dislikes and the development of methods of measuring the results have been important challenges for communication departments in whatever era. One reason why advertising expenses tend to be more subject to cuts than capital investment or research and development spending is probably that this methodology has not been established.

Finally, in view of the fact that BtoB companies have a high degree of overseas dependence, the response to globalization can be cited an urgent issue as well. At the present point in time, however, I am not informed enough to speak on this topic. I hope to address it in the future along with program evaluation.


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