BEST OF 2017: Mis-steps from Pepsi and McDonald’s contributed to brand purpose being put under the spotlight in 2017, but proved the need to approach this subject thoughtfully, with reading on WARC providing a mix of ideas and practice.

The most read article on WARC on this subject was What we know about brand purpose which explored current writing and thinking on the topic of brand purpose and noted there are different types of purpose, such as a worldview; or an outcome the brand wants to achieve; or an idea of the company's role in the world.

In second place was a practical example of brand purpose. The Evolution of PayPal - New Purpose, New Money was a paper describing a global research project for PayPal, the online payment service, which sought to contemporise the brand and align it with people’s attitudes to money.

In third place, Do you possess the hallmarks of a purpose-driven brand? argued that brand purpose needs to be shaped and driven by multiple departments within a company, while consistency and authenticity have to be maintained in the brand if it wants to keep customers engaged.

In fourth was Has purpose "peaked"? Diageo's formula for building brand purpose, in which CMO Syl Saller outlined a content filter that can refine the purpose-driven process.

Finally, How IKEA's brand purpose keeps it fresh explained how a focus on the value of “life at home” has enabled the Swedish furniture giant to cross borders, sell across a spectrum of age groups and pursue a vast range of communications activities that all tie back to this theme.

Sourced from WARC