What is Brand Purpose?
Purpose is the inspirational reason for a brand’s existence beyond making money. For most companies, this means doing something good; it’s often the difference the organisation wants to make in the world.
Brands are often hard to describe and even harder for consumers to understand, even though we’re exposed to them daily. Fully understanding the nature of a brand involves looking at several different factors, each of which is important for a business to consider when creating its brand. Among these is Brand Purpose. In this article, we’ve created a detailed breakdown of what a brand’s purpose is and why it’s so essential for boosting the value of your brand.
The importance of proper brand strategy
Brands aren’t created overnight and certainly don’t succeed without proper planning and care. Your brand is your business’s identity, which consumers should be able to pick up on immediately. The brand is a valuable company asset that supports its marketing efforts, bringing in consumers and drawing attention to what you can offer. A strong brand takes time, discipline, and ongoing strategising. Effective brand strategy helps business leaders reach their goals whilst appealing to the right consumers.
Why brand purpose matters
WARC (World Advertising Research Centre) claims that purpose is one of the most significant movements in business history. Brand purpose is just one aspect of a business’s branding that impacts how it is perceived. Vision One’s latest research shows that purpose is a priority for most brand owners and that brands with a purpose are outgrowing those that don’t. Specialist brand research agencies like Vision One are helping brands develop their purpose.
Businesses that open up about their goals can benefit by attracting consumers who respect these ideals and efforts. While three-quarters of companies claim to have a brand purpose, it’s interesting that very few appear to be activating it in their marketing, and brands should be using it more.
An exciting side-effect of purpose is that it can be a great way to establish valuable working relationships with other businesses that share your goals.
Definition of brand purpose
Put simply, brand purpose is the reason ‘why’ a company exists beyond making a profit. It centres around the ‘why’ and helps explain a business’s actions and what it stands for. The idea is that this purpose will be evident in how the company conducts itself, both in providing products and services and in its internal operations.
Author Simon Sinek explains, “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.” As such, brand purpose is often something that consumers look for to determine whether a company’s views align with their own. It’s, therefore, a major factor in purchase decision-making.
There can be many influences on a brand’s purpose, which can include:
- The personal views or experiences of a company director or founder.
- Perceptions of the market and the people who work in it
- Support for certain community efforts or social causes
- Creating targeted change in the industry.
- Taking a stance on moral, social, or political issues.
- Desire to add value to customers’ lives in specific areas.
Most likely, a brand’s purpose will be established by a combination of some number of the above. Therefore, the team must sit down and take time to discuss the reasons behind a company’s brand purpose and its values. At Vision One, our brand research services help businesses develop and build potent brand purposes and make the most of their brand.
What else goes into a company brand?
Brand purpose alone is not enough to establish everything that consumers should know about a company and what it stands for. Below are the other main branding elements that should be considered alongside the brand purpose.
Growing brands are forward-looking. Your brand needs a long–term vision and goals it constantly strives to achieve. This differs from brand values, which are emulated in the actions of the business. Instead, a brand vision is a goal that can be quantified. Typical examples are reaching a certain company size or achieving a certain quality standard in the business’s products and services. Of course, brand vision will also influence how the business operates. IKEA’s vision is “To create a better everyday life for the many people.”
Whereas the brand purpose is more conceptual, the brand mission statement sets out the roadmap the business needs to follow to achieve the purpose. The mission can, therefore, contain a number of smaller goals. However, these will be essential to reaching the bigger landmarks outlined by the brand vision. Coca-Cola’s mission is ‘To refresh the world and make a difference’.
Company brand values are the beliefs that it supports in its day-to-day operations. This aspect of the brand can greatly impact how specific processes are carried out. For example, a manufacturer that values sustainability will likely only use certain materials and have more measures to minimise waste. The values will reflect the Purpose and Mission and how the brand might achieve its goals.
This can’t typically be controlled during the brand creation stage. Instead, over time, businesses can raise brand awareness through different actions. Brand awareness refers to the extent to which consumer audiences are familiar with the company and the nature of its products and services. This is one of the main factors when building trust in a brand and establishing the values your business should be associated with.
Branding services that get results
Vision One’s mission is to support business leaders facing important decisions and need to understand the customers’ perspective. This is just one of the ways we work towards our goal of being the most helpful research agency possible. Our experts provide tailored market research data containing qualitative and quantitative data to give you the full picture. We are a market research company accredited internationally to ISO 20252:2012 standards. Contact the team at Vision One to discover how we can help your brand develop to where it needs to be.