Brand purpose, an idea bigger than profit, is seen as a way to drive long-term sustainable business growth. Having a purpose beyond profits has emerged as one of the most powerful ways to engage consumers and gain brand preference. Further, it is beginning to be an expectation of some consumers, something they look for when choosing a brand.

Definition

Purpose is a reason for a brand to exist beyond making profit. It combines the ambitions and beliefs that motivate the organisation and the changes that it wants to make in the world. Some define purpose strictly in terms of a social mission, others insist you can have a non-social purpose, for example, to be the most exciting energy drink in the world.

Key insights

1. A brand purpose is nothing without action

While 76% of marketing leaders say their organization has a defined purpose, only one in ten say it’s being systematically activated. The problem is often that the purpose is a platitude without burning conviction. The strongest brand purposes stem from an impassioned point of view based on real convictions about life and the world. Crafting a “creed” is an effective way to capture the brand’s point of view and intentions so that it can effectively activate its purpose. It captures three things:

  • Convictions – the brand’s deeply held beliefs
  • Prime value – the one human value the brand holds most dear and is its ultimate aim for people and the world
  • Purpose – the brand’s inspirational reason for being beyond making money, the difference it seeks to make in the world.