Finding your brand purpose should be the number one step of your overall brand strategy, yet very few organizations do it. This article aims to define the concept of brand purpose and why it’s so essential to any organization’s brand strategy.
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What is a brand purpose?
A brand purpose is the reason for an organization’s activities. It is based on what a company strongly believes in, and what difference it can make in the world. It isn’t necessarily about saving the planet, however, it needs to be worthy to some extent. For example, by taking small yet meaningful actions.
Quoted in Marketing Week, Donnelly explained:
“My advice to brands would be to revisit their purpose. Purpose isn’t about having one tactical plan with a charity or an agency – it has to be big, inspiring, simple and memorable. It has to inspire every single person in your company, as well as shareholders, stakeholders and agencies.”
The benefits of having a clear brand purpose
Brands who have a purpose:
- Stand up for a belief that will add value to the lives of their consumers, society and/or the environment.
- Stand out from competitors thanks to a focused long-term strategy and a very clear message.
- Stand firm by creating a strong corporate culture with a clear vision for the brand’s long-term mission.
Why it is so important?
Today, every organization knows what they do (e.g. selling shower gels), some organizations know how they do it (e.g. through a clear brand differentiation strategy, a fun packaging design, a creative ad campaign), but very few actually know why they do it (e.g. to help people feel good and accept their body as it is, as Dove does it).
However, an organization whose employees can answer the question, “Why are we here?” will create deeper emotional connections with consumers, employees, investors and other stakeholders. Today, consumers need brands and products that add a real meaning to their lives, and employees need to understand what the real purpose of working for a specific organization is. Brands need not only to represent their products, but the people behind the products too.
In his very popular Ted Talk, Simon Sinek clearly explained why it is so important for brands to have a purpose. We highly recommend you to click on the video bellow to see his full speech.
To summarize the main idea he presented, Sinek explained that “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”. What you do just proves to the people out there what you believe.
To finish, a great purpose needs to be followed up by a sustainable, authentic and long-term commitment from the brand to achieve it. This will guarantee a noticeable impact on the business.
How to define a brand purpose?
To find a relevant purpose for your brand, ask yourself:
- How could the brand improve society?
- What issues do your ideal consumers care about?
- What do the people working for the organization find inspiring? What would they be proud to achieve with the business besides making money?
- What would inspire employees to work for the brand?
- What is your organization good at?
- Would the purpose be aligned with your current products or services?
Examples of real-life brand purposes summarized in one sentence
Here are some examples of brand purposes summarized in just one sentence. You’ll see that some can seem stronger than others. The stronger the purpose is, the stronger your long-term strategy will be.