Throughout my studies in communications, I have come to learn many things about not only brand strategic communications, but also about myself, as both a potential brand communicator, and as a brand consumer. What does this mean? That I’ve been looking at how brands communicate their values and how I as a consumer can respond to these values depending on where my own values lie. For example, I’ve learned that I can empathize better with brands that display values of giving back to the community, looking out for animal rights, and caring for the environment. When brands share these values with me and communicate them to me clearly, I am more likely to support these brands. Think of your top three values, and then think about a few of your favourite companies, companies that you would support even if their products changed or it became less convenient to support them… chances are that these companies share with you at least one core value, or support initiatives that have made you aware of new values you might possess.
When I came across Purpose Collective, it was like a big “eureka!” moment. Not only does this self-start up Community Investment Firm share values with me (like supporting local businesses), but they also work with local companies to “create metrics for impact and return on investment through their giving practices.” In other words, help brands realize their own values, and connect them to initiatives that they can support to show these values, thus allowing potential consumers to bond with the brand through its values. Consider me obsessed.
I think that the younger generation, specifically, is bombarded with so much competition in every industry that we require more than just great product to maintain brand loyalty (Bronté’s last post on this describes this well). Because of this, brands are learning that they need to step up their game both online, in customer service, and in value management in order to cultivate long-term customer relationships. In my eyes, this can only be a positive shift. When brands do good in their community, it inspires a greater change and altruism within its customers that reflects into “real life,” and I think the world could always use a bit more of that.
Check out Purpose Collective, and tell me what you think. What are your thought about brand values? Do you know any great brands that share your values?