By Mirella Arapian.
"Never let a good crisis go to waste.” – Winston Churchill.
Recent global events have proven that purpose—a phrased once used in a business context by non-profit organisations and community groups—is a strong force that drives brand behaviour. In fact, these events have shifted people’s perceptions about what truly matters: in life, at work, at home, who they spend time with and what they spend money on.
So what’s “brand purpose” anyway?
Brand purpose is a reason for a brand to exist beyond making a profit. The Golden Circle by Simon Sinek explains this further: WHAT Every organisation knows what they do. These are products they sell or services they offer.
HOW Some organisations know how they do it. These are the things that make them special or set them apart from their competition.
WHY Very few organisations know why they do what they do. Why is not about making money. That’s a result. Why is a purpose, cause or belief. It’s the very reason your organisation exists.
Knowing why your company exists provides the foundation for everything else. Knowing your why means you can reverse engineer your what and how, to make them align with your purpose, resulting in a brand that has far more value, equity, and loyalty than one that does nothing more than sell products or services for profit.
So why does your brand need purpose to survive?
Today's COVID-19, climate crisis, political, economic, and social justice landscape has changed the way we live, work, and interact with others, and will continue to do so for a long time to come.
Brands that will thrive in the face of crisis or adversity are ones that are guided by purpose, and in 2021, not having a purpose is no longer an option for brands—it’s expected. People want values they can relate to, ethos they’re inspired by, and a genuine and compelling reason for investing their time, energy, and money on products and services. Consumers are demanding more, not only from the brands they buy from, but the brands they buy into.
According to Kantar Consulting’s 2020 Purpose Research (PDF), brands recognised for high commitment to purpose have grown at more than twice the rate of brands without purpose. Furthermore, the research found that brands with purpose significantly increased consumer demand by 84%, employee preference by 300%, and financial performance by $6 trillion. It’s a no-brainer.
Mirella Arapian is Founder and Creative Director of Mek, a purpose-driven creative studio in Brunswick, Melbourne. To learn how Mek can help bolster your brand, visit mek.studio or follow @mek.studio on Instagram.