We are constantly surrounded by articles with titles like: ‘Davos 2015: What bold pledges would you like business leaders to make?’ ‘How concerned are CEOs about climate change? Not at all,’ and ‘Public trust hits five-year low.’
The revelations of irresponsible spending in the banking sector, coupled by the recent recession, have shed light on more deep-rooted issues plaguing Big businesses: Ethics. This trend has filtered into the mainstream, rather than resonating within the select few. Gradually, retail giants like Abercrombie and Fitch, Tesco and Apple are suffering from swathes of bad press. Their ability to recover is measured by their actions – will they change?
When we try to define a brand, we usually come across the following: ‘A brand is a name, term, design or feature that distinguishes one seller’s product from another.’
It’s important to remember that your brand is a representation of your company, and many forget to include the most important element: The personality, or ethos behind your business.
More importantly, your company only exists because there is a want or need for your product. It’s pretty simple, without consumers you wouldn’t make any money, companies are coming across as shallow, moneymaking machines, there needs to be more. You have to add value, show the general public that there is a reason to buy your product, a reason to seek out your services.
Take Toms™ founder Blake Mycoskie for example, he started a campaign called ‘One for one,’this meant that every time a customer buys a pair of Toms, the company provides a pair for a child in need. What Mycoskie really provided was real incentive for you to buy his product, you are not just treating yourself but you are also helping someone else.
Dove™ Pro-Age range offers different value in the form of advocating an important social issue – Society’s view on women and ageing. Instead of pigeonholing themselves to a single demographic of customers their campaign had another effect – they showed that they care and have continued on to promote healthy self-esteem in young women. This is particularly successful on Facebook, an easy to access way for their customers to get involved in the project.
Both of these companies have stayed within the boundaries of their product sector, the footwear brand – providing shoes, and the Beauty brand – shedding light on a social issue relating to body image. Neither company strayed too far from what they know to provide this service.
If you are involved with such an initiative then you need to be shouting about it, you may donate a percentage of your proceeds to a chosen charity or be great at mobilising and advocating social issues. Tell people what you do through every channel available to you – promote your cause through social media, in your branding on your website and get involved with your community. There are so many tools at your disposal, methods of sharing and promoting information, so use them to promote your cause, not just your product.