Working everyday to bring about meaningful change
“People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it.
— Simon Sinek, Start With Why
The market is saturated with brands that go bigger, faster, cheaper, slicker. We have been bombarded by adverts that promise ‘X’ will make us more beautiful, successful, and attractive to the opposite sex. The problem is that in the 21st century, this is no longer enough for people to really care about your brand.
In fact, research suggests that consumers would not care if 73% of brands were to disappear completely, and that only a fifth of brands make any meaningful impact on our lives. The desire for more and more stuff is being replaced by a desire for meaningful experiences and connections, which elevate the human experience.
The key to finding more meaningful brand expressions is by first defining and determining your brand’s purpose.
If vision informs us where we are headed, it is purpose that drives and inspires us every day. It’s a sense of calling, a desire to make a difference, to bring about lasting change in the world. Your purpose should be the heartbeat of your brand, the story that unites people, and the cause greater than money. Purpose fulfils the need that is buried deep in the human psyche; that the work of your hands matters.
Purposeful brands are acutely aware – not just of what they do – but why they do it. Their products and services work to fulfil their purpose, not define them.
A great example of a purposeful brand is Nike. They are a commodity brand, and yet they rarely talk about their product lines. Instead, they celebrate those who represent excellence in sports, and inspire others to personal greatness in their striving to be better, fitter, faster, stronger. Nike’s mission statement is not to sell more shoes than anyone else, it’s to bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.
Their Nike+ and FuelBands are further evidence of this. Developing technology that creates a metric by which people can challenge themselves, compete with their friends, and lead healthier lifestyles.
Purposeful brands matter to people when we can relate to their cause in human terms. We will champion and advocate these brands, because their cause says something about who we are, and what we believe.