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Opinion: Why BCorp certification is more important now than ever

In a world that’s lurching from one crisis to the next, you can sway in the prevailing wind or you can make a stand and lead from the front. Where governments are failing, our business communities need to step up. That’s why Media Bounty has become part of the growing B Corp movement and is joining the call for systemic change.  

Businesses are facing unprecedented challenges once again. As we emerge from the shadow of the pandemic, we’re facing a host of new challenges driven by an array of geopolitical, economic and environmental crises: cost of living, the war in Ukraine, potential food shortages, the prospect of rolling blackouts this winter, climate breakdown, mass extinction, the fallout from Brexit, the list goes on… 

Agencies are not immune. Salary inflation is crippling, driven by talent shortages exacerbated by our exit from the EU, as well as the greatest cost of living crisis in a generation. Overheads are soaring as business customers grapple with energy costs that may have finally secured a price cap, only to face a cliff edge in six months. Clients are cutting budgets as energy prices hit manufacturing, the consequences of drought hit food production, and consumer demand declines.  

Consumers too are facing desperate choices as we lurch from one crisis to the next. But discontent is brewing. People are demanding change. Rightly people cannot rationalise why those whose business is in fossil fuel extraction continue to rake in billions in profit, while the most vulnerable in society face a choice of heat or eat this winter.  

The existing model of creating shareholder value at all costs is outdated and broken. The tide is turning. Consumers are demanding it. Employees are demanding it. Our societies and planet desperately need it.

We need another way.  

At Media Bounty we’ve woven ethics into our mission since day one. Our very first employees back in 2008 had volunteering leave written into their contracts and we donated to our charity partner for every project we took on – and both of which we proudly continue today.   

Since then, we’ve increased our ethical impact year on year to strengthen our governance, nurture our people, protect our environment and empower our communities. In our small way, we’ve done ok. We’ve protected swathes of critically threatened habitats across the globe and clocked up hundreds of hours of volunteering. We’ve been selective about who we work with and have created industry initiatives to put ethics front and centre in advertising.  

But the world’s problems need bold solutions at scale and collective action. We felt we needed to be part of something bigger. Something that could amplify our impact. That’s why we ultimately decided to become a B Corp and work towards their rigorous certification.  

In order to stand a chance of tackling the global challenges we find ourselves in as a human race, we need to upend shareholder primacy and move towards an economic system based on stakeholder capitalism, collaboration, and the triple bottom line economics of people, planet, profit. 

What does this mean for our clients?

For our clients what this means is essentially more of the same. We continue to be committed to transparency in the client/agency relationship, with no mark-ups on third-party cost, media plans that are neutral as standard and not based on unsold inventory; while any rebates from media partners are returned to the client.   

Regular account reviews will continue to ensure the highest possible levels of service, and we’ll match your brand with the very best people to deal with the issues your business faces in the world today. We will carry on investing in our people to ensure they are happy and motivated and passionate about solving the big world problems. Our suppliers too will be treated with respect, and wherever possible we’ll be partnering with like-minded businesses who are equally committed to EDI and sustainability.   

Our work on industry-leading initiatives to combat climate misinformation will continue, where it will have the added benefit of ensuring your brand’s safety in a world where reputations can be trashed overnight through negative associations. And we will make sure our own house is in order on the environmental front. Not only are we carbon neutral, we’re also tackling Scope 3 emissions head on while our commitment to the environment also seeks to protect biodiversity in the face of the Extinction Crisis.  

And through our volunteering and pro-bono efforts, we can continue to support organisations on the frontline dealing with social and environmental injustice, empowering our team to make a difference and forge an even deeper understanding of the world we live in and the communities within it.  


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