We First partners with corporations, social enterprises, and Foundations to identify and communicate their social purpose in ways that build their business.

We help them integrate that purpose inside their organization across leadership, marketing, and company cultures. We show them how to share that story with customers, communities, and the media with authenticity, transparency and accountability. We empower brands to grow through social good.

Our Expertise

Our team of expert storytellers, tech geeks, and change agents is focused on the intersection of three areas critical to our client’s long-term growth, success, and impact.

Our Structure

We build bespoke teams dedicated to your business or project to meet every client’s specific needs on a project or retainer basis. We approach each project with a collaborative mindset partnering with advertising, digital, or social media agencies to best serve our clients.

Our Focus

We First partners with clients to position their brands for cultural leadership. We achieve this by ensuring they define and share their story in ways that achieve measurable social impact that establishes their cultural leadership.

Our Methodology


Brand Discovery
What is your brand strategy?

  • We First reviews all client materials related to the brand, its strategic planning, the competitive  landscape, and consumer research.
  • We First interviews key stakeholders for their input on the definition and future of the brand.
  • We identify communication dynamics inside the company and marketing communications outside  the company that are competing, conflicting, or costly.
  • We First establishes the business case for telling a singular and purposeful brand story.


Social Purpose
What is your company’s social purpose?

  • We First defines the social purpose of a company or Foundation to serve as a guide for defining the  brand’s story and its social marketing.
  • This includes defining the brand’s Promise to the world.


Story Definition & Framing
What is your brand story?

  • We First defines the brand story in a singular, emotional and compelling statement that is  innately sharable.
  • We First frames the brand story in a consumer facing way that positions the brand as a celebrant,  not celebrity, of its customer community.
  • This includes defining the Manifesto, Values, and Mission of the brand.

Internal Story Integration
How do you engage employees?

  • We First defines how to bring the brand story to life for leadership, marketing, and employees to ensure alignment between what a company says and what it does.


External Story Integration
How do you inspire customers?

  • We First aligns existing and future marketing efforts across the company and its product brands into a messaging hierarchy that serves a singular and purposeful brand story.


Community Architecture
How do you build a community?

  • We First outlines community-building strategies that ensure the brand enjoys short-term tactical benefits as well as long term reputation benefits.

Activation Strategies
How do you create measurable impact?

  • We First ideates how to bring this story to life in a way that inspires employees, partners, and customers to engage to build the brand’s reputation and social impact.


Co-creative Tactics
How do you celebrate customers?

  • We First provides concepts for how to empower employees and consumers to co-create and promote the brand story to build the business and achieve measurable social impact.


Cultural Leadership
How do you shape culture?

  • We First outlines ways for the brand to lead a cultural conversation that will establish a competitive advantage, build its reputation, and scale its social impact.

Best selling book

Simon Mainwaring’s first book, We First: How brands and consumers use social media to build a better world (Palgrave Macmillan) is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon bestseller. It was named an Amazon Top Ten Business Book for 2011, 800CEORead Top Five Marketing Book for 2011, and strategy+business named it the Best Business Marketing Book of the Year.

We First offers a visionary new practice in which brands leverage social media to earn consumer goodwill, loyalty and profit, while creating a third pillar of sustainable social change through conscious contributions from customer purchases. The book answers the most pressing issue facing business and thought leaders today: how to practice capitalism in a way that satisfies the need for both profitable business growth and a healthy, sustainable planet. It has been translated into Russian, Chinese, Taiwanese and Korean.

Order your copy of We First



Chapter 1
Transforming the Engine of Capitalism

Chapter 2
Redefining Self-Interest from Me First to We First

Chapter 3
The Future of Profit is Purpose

Chapter 4
Creating Sustainable Capitalism in Five Ways

Chapter 5
Instilling We First Values into Capitalism

Chapter 6
Why the World Needs a Responsible Private Sector

Chapter 7
How Brands Build Their Business and a Better World

Chapter 8
How Consumers Build Responsible Brands and a Better World

Chapter 9
How Contributory Consumption Creates Sustainable Social Change

Chapter 10
The Global Brand Initiative: The Future of the Private Sector


Order your copy of We First

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