Originally published in Fast Company.
Today’s brand must live and breathe through its core values in order to survive. Purpose is king, and there’s no turning back.
When 87% of global consumers believe business should place equal weight on societal issues and business issues, the better a brand brings its societal purpose to life in everyday operations, the more successful both business and social impact will be.
With our planet in a rapid state of decline–climate change, loss of biodiversity, disparity of wealth, obesity, water scarcity, the list goes on–companies will increasingly be viewed as either part of the solution or problem.
But since the way businesses convey values will ultimately determine success, how brands authentically position in a way that is meaningful and relevant has never been more important.
One look into a Whole Foods, for instance, and you can see CEO John Mackey has core value positioning mastered. Its core values are steeped into its culture–from grocery bags to large visuals across more than 340 stores. And they don’t just apply from situation to situation; they act as the underpinning of its company culture. With a focus on environmental stewardship, the health of local and global communities, the happiness of team members, and high-quality products, its epicenter of core values drive business through the greater purpose of serving humanity.
At this year’s We First Social Branding Seminar, Simon Mainwaring, author of We First and founder and CEO of brand consultancy We First, Inc., shared the latest research and strategies used to harness core values to optimize social impact while building the bottom line. Brands and nonprofits from Toyota to charity: water shared success stories and strategies.
Here’s a look into 10 ways today’s purpose-driven brand can bring its core values to life: