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Revealing the Power of Brand Purpose: Why it Matters and How to Define Yours

Revealing the Power of Brand Purpose: Why it Matters and How to Define Yours

In a world where consumers seek meaning and connection, brand purpose has emerged as a crucial driver of success. In this article, we will explore the concept of brand purpose, why it matters, and how businesses can define and use theirs.

Brand purpose refers to the fundamental reason for a brand’s existence beyond just making a profit. It defines the broader societal or human problem that a brand aims to address or contribute to solving. A brand purpose goes beyond selling products or services and focuses on making a positive impact on society, the environment, or people’s lives. It is what determines, the products or services that a business offers, as well as how and why a business serves its target market

Advantages of brand purpose

Brand purpose offers numerous advantages for businesses, ranging from building customer loyalty to creating employee engagement and driving long-term growth. Here are some key advantages of having a clear brand purpose:

  • Differentiate your brand from competitors

A brand purpose gives your company a unique stance to stand out against competitors by communicating its unique identity, values, and commitments. In crowded markets where products and services may be similar, a compelling brand purpose can serve as a powerful differentiator, attracting customers and building brand preference.

  • Rally your teams around a cause

When everyone understands and embraces your brand’s purpose, it puts everyone on the same page and fosters unity and collaboration. A meaningful brand purpose inspires and motivates employees by providing a sense of purpose and direction beyond financial goals. Employees who believe in their company’s purpose are more engaged, committed, and passionate about their work, leading to higher productivity, morale, and retention rates.

  • Build long-lasting customer loyalty

A clear brand purpose helps you connect with your target audience deeper, creating a strong emotional bond and creating a long-term customer loyalty. When customers perceive a brand as aligned with their own values and aspirations, they are more likely to develop emotional connections.

  • Drive innovation and creativity

A well-defined brand purpose inspires your teams to think outside the box and conceive innovative solutions, leading to new products, services, and experiences. Brand purpose encourages innovation and creativity by inspiring employees to find new ways to fulfill the brand’s mission and address environmental challenges. Purpose-driven organizations often foster a culture of innovation, collaboration, and experimentation to achieve their goals.

  • Attract and retain top talent

A compelling brand purpose attracts top talent individuals who are passionate about your mission, leading to a more engaged and motivated workforce. One survey shows 75% of leaders agree that a business strategy built around purpose leads to better talent attraction and retention.

  • Enhance your brand’s reputation

Brands with a clear purpose and commitment to social or environmental causes often enjoy a positive reputation among consumers, stakeholders, and communities. This goodwill builds a positive brand reputation and fosters trust and credibility.

  • Create meaningful impact

A brand purpose allows you to make a positive difference in society by addressing social or environmental issues, creating a sense of purpose and fulfillment for your brand and its stakeholders. Based on Razorfish’s research, buyers are 32% more likely to purchase from a brand with social advocacy than one offering a personal benefit.

  • Resilience and Adaptability

A brand purpose serves as a compass, helping your company navigate challenges and adapt to changing market trends and consumer expectations. A strong brand purpose provides a guiding principle for decision-making and strategic planning, enabling companies to stay focused and ready during times of uncertainty.

Elements of a good brand purpose

  • Clarity and Focus

A good brand purpose is clear, concise, and focused on addressing a specific societal, environmental, or human need. It defines the fundamental reason for the brand’s existence beyond profit making and provides a sense of direction for the organization.

  • Authenticity

Authenticity is essential for a brand purpose to be in line with customers, employees, and stakeholders. It should be based on the brand’s history, values, and culture, reflecting a genuine commitment to making a positive impact.

  • Relevance

A good brand purpose is relevant to both the brand and its target audience. It addresses issues or concerns that are meaningful and important to customers, aligning with their values, beliefs, and aspirations and avoiding ambiguity at all costs.

  • Differentiation

Brand purpose should differentiate the brand from competitors by communicating a unique identity, values, and commitments. It should set the brand apart in the minds of consumers and create a compelling reason for them to choose and advocate for the brand.

  • Inspiration

A good brand purpose inspires and motivates both internal and external stakeholders. It should influence emotionally, inspiring employees to align with the brand’s mission and encouraging customers to be part of something larger than themselves.

  • Actionable

A brand purpose should be actionable, guiding the brand’s decisions, actions, and initiatives across all levels of the organization. It should inspire strong steps and initiatives that display the brand’s commitment to its purpose.

  • Long-Term Oriented

Brand purpose is enduring and surpass short-term business objectives. It should provide a guiding principle for the brand’s actions and initiatives over time, driving long-term growth, sustainability, and societal impact.

  • Measurable

A good brand purpose should have measurable goals and outcomes that track the brand’s progress in achieving its purpose. It should demonstrate tangible impact on society, the environment, or people’s lives, proving the brand’s commitment and credibility.

  • Flexibility and Adaptability

Brand purpose should be flexible and adaptable to changing market dynamics, consumer preferences, and societal needs. It should evolve over time to remain relevant and meaningful in the face of new challenges and opportunities.

  • Transparency

A good brand purpose is transparent and accountable, with clear communication about the brand’s values, initiatives, and impact. It should create trust and credibility among stakeholders by demonstrating honesty, integrity, and accountability.

Tips to defining your brand purpose

Defining your brand purpose is a crucial step in establishing a clear identity and direction for your business. Her’s a guide on how to define your brand purpose:

  • Understand Your Values: Start by identifying the core values that drive your business. What principles and beliefs are important to you and your team? Consider aspects such as integrity, innovation, sustainability, or social responsibility.
  • Identify Your Audience: Understand who your target audience is and what matters to them. What are their needs, desires, and concerns? How can your brand address or align with those needs? How can your brand solve their problems?
  • Assess Your Impact: Consider the broader impact your business has on society, the environment, or people’s lives. How does your business contribute positively to the world? What unique value does it offer beyond products or services?
  • Make clear your mission: Define the purpose or mission of your brand. What is the ultimate goal or aspiration that your brand seeks to achieve? Your brand purpose should explain why, your business exists, and the positive change it aims to create.
  • Ensure Alignment: Ensure that your brand purpose aligns with your business objectives, values, and capabilities. It should reflect the essence of your brand and affect both internal stakeholders (employees) and external stakeholders (customers, partners, communities).
  • Be specific and Inspirational: Create a clear and inspiring statement that communicates your brand purpose. It should be memorable, emotionally attaching, and actionable, inspiring both your team and your audience.
  • Test and determine. Once you have defined your brand purpose, test it with key stakeholders to gather feedback and ensure clarity. Define as needed to refine and strengthen your brand purpose over time.
  • Integrate across all areas: Integrate your brand purpose into all aspects of your business, from marketing and communications to product development and customer experience. Ensure consistency in how your brand purpose is communicated, and lived out across all channels.
  • Measure Impact: Establish metrics and indicators to track the impact of your brand purpose over time. Monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) related to brand awareness, perception, customer loyalty, employee engagement, and societal impact.
  • Evolve and Adapt: Be prepared to evolve and adapt your brand purpose as your business grows and changes. Stay awake to shifting market changes, emerging trends, and updating stakeholder expectations, and adjust your brand purpose accordingly to remain relevant and impactful.

Example of purpose driven brands

  • Seventh Generation

Seventh Generation’s brand purpose is to inspire a consumer revolution that creates the health of the next seven generations. It acts out its purpose by creating products that are environmentally friendly and safe for people and the planet. Seventh Generation uses plant-based ingredients and avoids harmful chemicals in their formulas. In addition, it advocates for policies and practices that promote sustainability and reduce environmental impact.

  • Toms

Toms’ brand purpose is to improve lives through business. It fulfills its brand purpose by following a “One for One” model. For every pair of shoes a customer purchases, Toms donates a pair to a child in need. They also fund medical treatments, clean water initiatives, and education programs in communities worldwide. Toms’ purpose-driven approach aims to improve lives and create positive social impact.

  • Zoom

Zoom’s brand purpose is to make video communications smooth and secure, empowering people to accomplish more. It lives out its brand purpose by providing a user-friendly and secure platform for videoconferencing and collaboration. Zoom focuses on making smooth video communications so people can connect and collaborate from anywhere.

How to incorporate brand purpose into business

Incorporating brand purpose into your business involves integrating it into various aspects of your operations, culture, and communications. Here is a guide on how to do it effectively

  • Leadership alignment: Ensure that your leadership team is aligned and committed to the brand purpose. Leadership involvement is crucial for successfully integrating brand purpose into the business strategy and decision-making processes.
  • Employee engagement: Engage your employees in understanding and embracing the brand purpose. Communicate why the brand purpose matters and how each employee contributes to fulfilling it. Create a culture that values and promote the brand purpose in day-to-day operations.
  • Offering product and service: Align your product and service offerings with your brand purpose. Ensure that your offerings reflect your commitment to making a positive impact on society, the environment, or people’s lives. Consider how your products or services can address relevant societal or environmental issues.
  • Customer experience: Integrate your brand purpose into the customer experience journey. Ensure that every interaction with your brand promotes its purpose and values. Communicate your brand purpose through marketing messages, packaging, customer support, and user experience design.
  • Developing corporate social responsibility (CSR): Develop and implement CSR initiatives that support your brand purpose. Identify areas where your business can make a meaningful impact, such as sustainability, community engagement, or social justice. Engage with stakeholders and partners to amplify your CSR efforts.
  • Evaluating supply chain and operations: Evaluate your supply chain and operational practices to ensure alignment with your brand purpose. Consider factors such as ethical sourcing, environmental sustainability, and fair labor practices. Collaborate with suppliers and partners who share your values and commitment to responsible business practices.
  • Enhancing marketing and communications: Communicate your brand purpose authentically and transparently through your marketing and communications channels. Tell compelling stories that illustrate how your brand is making a difference in the world.
  • Measurement and Reporting: Establish metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the impact of your brand purpose initiatives. Track progress over time and regularly report on your performance to stakeholders. Use data and insights to refine and optimize your efforts.
  • Continuous improvement: Continuously evaluate and update your approach to incorporating brand purpose into your business. Get feedback from employees, customers, and other stakeholders to identify areas for improvement and innovation. Stay active and adaptable to evolving market trends and societal needs.
  • Lead by example: Demonstrate your commitment to your brand purpose through your actions as a business leader. Be transparent, accountable, and proactive in addressing challenges and opportunities related to your brand purpose. Inspire others to join you in making a positive impact on the world.


Brand purpose include promoting sustainability, supporting social justice and equality, empowering communities, advancing education or healthcare, and advocating for environmental conservation. Brands that effectively articulate and live their purpose often enjoy stronger customer loyalty, employee engagement, and long-term success. By incorporating brand purpose into all aspects of your business, you can create a more meaningful and impactful organization that aligns with customers, employees, and stakeholders alike.

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