The ONE thing all brands should try in 2024

What do Taylor Swift, Speco, and Singapore Airlines have in common? 

It’s simple – they have cultivated a brand reputation rooted in their genuine commitment to human connection. Each of these brands has an affinity for social consciousness. By consistently aligning their actions with values that resonate deeply with their audiences, they have transcended mere products or services to become icons of authenticity. 

In today’s deeply conscious and discerning marketplace, consumers are no longer swayed solely by product quality or price. Everyone is drawn to something more profound – a brand with a purpose, a mission that transcends mere profit.

Leading by example

Popstar  Taylor  Swift  is  renowned  for  her  musical  prowess  and  has  a  Good  Samaritan reputation for her advocacy on social issues such as gender equality and women’s rights. From donating to flood victims to visiting a hospitalised young fan who couldn’t make it to her concert, Swift has a long-standing history of charitable deeds – Billboard recently traced them all.  She  has  forged  an unbreakable bond with her fans through her authenticity and unwavering support for causes close to their hearts.

Meanwhile, Speco’s dedication to social sustainability shines through its dedication tosed Singaporeans like single parents, former offenders, and individuals with disabilities, Speco isn’t just building a business but building a community. From initiatives like job redesign and tech adoption to Smart Hygiene solutions designed for everyone, from grandparents to pets, Speco shows it’s not just about profits—it’s about people. That’s why the brand stands out when it comes to social consciousness, earning loyalty from both employees and customers alike.

The secret sauce to uplifting reputation

Purpose-driven marketing – it’s a surefire way to attract a like-minded audience. At its core, it isn’t just about selling products. It’s about defining and communicating a brand’s raison d’être – its reason for existing beyond the bottom line. This purpose typically revolves around making a positive impact on society, whether through environmental stewardship, social justice initiatives, or community empowerment. And the impact? It’s transformative.

Source: Singapore Airlines

It’s in the numbers. Studies have shown that consumers are not only drawn to purpose-driven brands but are willing to switch allegiances for them. Case in point: Singapore Airlines has earned a place in the hearts of travellers worldwide by consistently delivering exceptional service while prioritising sustainability and social responsibility. The airline recently allocated $1.3 million each to social service agencies Cerebral Palsy Alliance Singapore (CPAS) and SPD as part of its SIA Cares fundraising drive. The contribution underscores SIA’s commitment to supporting organisations like CPAS and SPD that provide crucial care and services for individuals with disabilities. This initiative showcases SIA’s dedication to social responsibility but also highlights its role as a responsible corporate citizen, actively contributing to the betterment of society. Through such impactful partnerships, SIA continues to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need, embodying its commitment to social welfare and community development.

One thing to note is that such efforts must come across as sincere; consumers can sense inauthenticity easily these days. Brands must go beyond selling and embrace causes to deeply resonate with their target audience to position themselves from mere sellers to compassionate advocates.

How to infuse purpose into your business strategy

Notice the pattern – when it comes to forging human connections and resonating on a personal level, we are talking about the “Social” pillar of ESG. This pillar encompasses a company’s impact on society, including its relationships with employees, customers, suppliers, and the communities in which it operates. Social factors include issues related to diversity and inclusion, labour practices, human rights, community engagement, customer satisfaction, and product safety. Companies that prioritise social sustainability aim to create positive outcomes and contribute to the well-being of society at large.

A solid method to build brand love? Be socially sustainable. Inject purpose into your communication efforts by focusing on the people involved.

Social sustainability must be woven into the fabric of the brand, from product development to customer engagement. It’s about living and breathing that purpose every day, not just when it’s convenient or profitable. And when done right, the rewards are boundless – increased brand loyalty, differentiation in a crowded market, and most importantly, a positive impact on society.

Such is the message echoed by one of our partners, SPD Contact Centre. As a non-profit organisation that redefines the workforce for Persons with Disabilities (PwDs), SPD promotes diversity and equality while also helping to put like-minded businesses on the track to social sustainability. Organisations that collaborate with SPD Contact Centre, such as VITAL and Lumens, get to build a glowing reputation while buffing up their business’ ESG efforts.

Two birds, one stone.

Purpose-driven marketing represents more than just a passing trend; it signifies a fundamental shift in how brands connect with consumers and fulfill their societal responsibilities. It always helps to remember that while ESG considerations often emphasise Environmental sustainability, it’s crucial to recognise the broader spectrum of Social responsibility. By aligning with authentic and meaningful purposes that resonate with societal values, brands can foster deeper connections with consumers, drive business success, and collectively contribute to positive societal change.

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