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In today’s business environment, the role of business ethics cannot be overestimated. More than before, business firms are increasingly being aware of the importance of adopting marketing ethics in their daily operations. According to Pride and Ferell (2008), the practices of marketing ethics provide business with the opportunity to engage in corporate social responsibility. Over recent years, Pfizer Inc. has been accused of engaging in the marketing and sale of drugs that were suspected to cause arthritis and menstrual pain (Halbert & Ingulli, 2011). While conducting its marketing strategy, Pfizer disregarded marketing code of ethics and went ahead to sell Bextra. Nonetheless, the firm must refrain from selling defective drugs and review its compliance to Federal laws and regulations in order to be an exemplary corporate citizen.
Marketing code of ethics plays an pivotal role in aligning business objectives with social responsibility. Notably, this code of ethics calls for adherence to honesty, citizenship, responsibility, respect, caring, and fairness in all its marketing operations (Andriof & McIntosh, 2001). However, Pfizer Inc. has been on the spotlight for selling Bextra, a drug attributed to a number of medical complications when consumed. In its marketing campaign, Pfizer failed to demonstrate honesty, respect for people’s health, and responsibility to promote positive health outcomes. Because of this, the firm sold Bextra to consumers for a long time without considering the potential impact of the drug. One employee of the firm, who resigned, mentioned that the firm’s management was aware of the drug’s effect on its consumers.
This scenario above underscores the failure of the firm in proving its commitment to, social corporate responsibility. Had the management placed the interest of consumers and stakeholders at heart, it would have strived towards achieving an excellent corporate image. Despite the failure of the firm in affirming its obligation in being a outstanding corporate citizen, there are several strategies that it can do to improve its image as seen by the consumers. Pfizer Inc. can revive its tainted image by discontinuing the production and sale of harmful drugs, and conducting a review of its compliance to Federal regulations and marketing ethics.
Given that Pfizer Inc. was accused of selling harmful drugs to consumers, the firm has to discontinue the marketing of Bextra and any other related drug. In doing so, the company would be reassuring its consumers that it is concerned with their safety and health. In addition, this strategy would help in promoting the social corporate, image of the firm. Today, firms are cultivating their social corporate responsibility by improving their services and products meant for consumption (Lenssen, 2006). Through this approach, Pfizer Inc. can earn a solid reputation as a pharmaceutical firm that respects and cares for the welfare of its consumers.
Pfizer can also review its compliance with regulation issued by Federal agencies and marketing association. First, corporate citizenship is shaped by factors such as compliance to Federal rules published to protect consumers. With adherence to such regulations, consumers can regard Pfizer Inc. as a reputable corporate firm committed to attaining corporate social responsibility. Moreover, observance of marketing code of ethics is a must for companies like Pfizer Inc. interested in boosting their stand as astute corporate citizens. If this strategy is executed well, Pfizer Inc. can demonstrate to the public of commitment to attaining corporate social responsibility.
Without doubt, corporate social responsibility plays a significant role in the success of business firms. Pfizer Inc. is an example of a firm that has disregarded the value of being a valued corporate citizen, by overlooking at stipulated marketing code of ethics. With the selling of Bextra, the firm displayed sheer lack of honesty and commitment to the welfare of the consumers. Nonetheless, the firm can discontinue product such as Bextra and at the same time review its compliance to Federal laws and regulation in order to be an excellent corporate citizen.