Companies focused on profit don’t actually make the most profit.
The answer to which type of companies do make the most profit (and how much more), will be revealed at the end of this post.
This blog post is about brand and the importance of purpose.
A brand purpose goes beyond just a customer promise or campaign tagline, and it should do more than just articulate a CSR initiative in a pithy way.
It provides a north star to the organisation – shaping decision-making, product development and attracting talent.
Some well-known examples being:
Google – To organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.
Nike – To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world. (We believe if you have a body, you are an athlete).
Special K – Empowering women to take control and maintain their healthy weight.
Both Google’s and Nike’s purpose states an ambition that sits right on the cusp of credibility. Some brand purposes are smaller, more specific, or more attainable on a day-to-day basis.
Either way, a brand purpose should provide a foundation for why the company exists, and what it will continue to strive for.
But to bring us back to the start, purpose has an added benefit.
Companies with a clearly defined purpose that they have pursued have been found to deliver six times more return to their shareholders than their purely profit-driven rivals (see Jim Collins and Jerry Porras’ book, Built to Last).
The trick is to make sure it’s embedded into your culture instead of it becoming just a footnote on your marketing collateral.
So next time you discuss ‘brand’ think beyond the funky logo and question if it creates a purpose that both your customers and your company can get behind.