Promise + Purpose
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Promise + Purpose

Should you aspire to be a meaningful brand?

The idea of “meaningful brands” is taking industry by storm as more and more enterprises look for ways to prevail in the 21st Century, a time of great change and innovation.

Should you join this bandwagon? Not before you fully understand what it means to be a meaningful brand, what it entails from an organizational change point of view, and what it can do for your business.

Here, we provide top-line answers to a few of the most commonly asked questions.

What is a meaningful brand?

A brand transcends the market when it decides to look beyond the profit agenda and see its business — and its outcomes — in the light of meaning. This means taking stock of all the positive impacts the business has on the personal lives of people, the state of social well-being, and the health of the planet. This accounting places value on factors that are often unquantifiable and which often operate below the radar.

Why do meaningful brands thrive?

When a business embraces meaning and makes it the foundation of its brand strategy, new and far more powerful and productive connections are forged between the brand and the people it impacts, both within and outside the business.

This is because people are naturally attuned to meaning. It is what helps them make sense of the world. This makes them feel safe and secure. It helps them feel more connected to others and to ideals. Finally, once realized, meaning gives people a sense of personal growth.

There’s value in connecting on these deeper levels because the current Zeitgeist is leaving many people feeling insecure, isolated, and stuck. These adverse conditions prime people to be receptive to meaningful ideas, and the brands that bring them to light.

What does it take to have a meaningful brand?

The bedrock of a meaningful brand is a true, credible, and motivating purpose. This is a statement that both sums up the core of your brand’s meaning, and that can serve as an inspiring and actionable rallying cry for your organization. However, a purpose is only a sentence until it is embraced across the organization, acted upon day-in and day-out, and a living truth about your brand. This requires top-level support of, commitment to, and action around the brand’s purpose. This requires change within that reshapes beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors.

What’s the cost of foregoing meaning?

Perhaps the biggest downside of not capitalizing on your brand’s meaning will be ever-increasing brand irrelevance.

As the Zeitgeist turns up all the dials that have people seeking meaning, and as competitors embrace and convey their own unique meaning, your brand’s outdated approach will make less and less sense to people. Prospects will be drawn to meaningful brands. Customers will defect to meaningful brands. The best recruits will be attracted by meaningful brands. Your top employees will move to meaningful brands.

At the same time, your organization will not derive the strong internal alignment, motivation, and engagement that flows within the workplaces of meaningful brands. It will be increasingly hard to innovate, to compete, and to differentiate your brand in ways that matter.

What’s the next step?

Of course, the best answers to these questions would correspond closely to the exact situation, markets, and strategies of your business. That’s where we come in. We have specialized skill in discerning meaning within business and social contexts. We develop strategies that fill the gap between your current business practices and behaviors and what it takes to be a truly meaningful brand. We bring an invaluable outsider perspective fueled by strong levels of intuition, empathy, and compassion. We understand how to marry the intent to be truly meaningful with the harsh realities of the business world.

Why languish as an increasingly meaningless brand? Thrive by embracing purpose, shifting attitudes and behavior, and by moving ahead of the crowd in a meaningful way.





An Emotive Brand publication that explores bold strategies for building promise-packed, purpose-led brands.

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