WHY does a particular Brand exist?
It all starts with Culture Currency.
While the insight makes the brand, and category relevant, it is important to be cognizant of the bigger socio-cultural movements and shifts because that is what makes the branding strategy significant in the life of the consumer.
All brands solve a category problem, some better, faster, and more efficiently than others, but few brands transcend that and start becoming indispensable in the life of the consumer. Brands manage that when they are either culture or culture activists.
“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou,
This is the foundation, the building block of the WHY of all brands.
Have you ever wondered Why nobody cares for your brand*?.
I came across this beautiful advertisement released by Schneider Electric, which was published in multiple newspapers on the issue of the environment and asking people to be part of this with a deeper purpose for the organization.
The brand realized that a PURPOSE is needed in the era of existential crisis and the importance of defining WHY a brand exists.
Well, Schneider Electric proves its existence.
Recently, they have worked out a purpose-driven strategy, keeping in mind, the future of the brand in this competitive world.
Here while most of the brands are focusing on transactional businesses, here comes a brand, which is trying to build a new Culture Currency that can be traded in the future.
The advertisement is very well articulated and follows perfect sequencing of communication that flows seamlessly. Starting with a letter from the management followed by “how we can help” and how we all can become part of this TRIBE (enabled with technology) of community-conscious citizens. The letter is an exaltation to the readers urging them to join the movement to address environmental and climate issues.
The letter also throws light on Schneider’s initiatives toward sustainability and how it is seeking to build a community of conscious citizens to help the cause.
This advert reaffirmed that the organization has a deeper purpose and existential meaning in the world.
However, despite the communication excellence which I started admiring, I could not but, still felt that probably, what it lacked is a humanistic touch. Maybe, the CEO’s signature would have made a world of difference. Nonetheless, this remains one of the most appealing approaches that will certainly contribute to further the objectives of Brand Building; ultimately leading to more SALES.
Furthermore, the communication also uses a QR code enabling convenience and on-the-spot opportunity for the readers to register for the cause and start their sustainability journey. AND this technology-aided approach will further help them in the collection of corporate intelligence, the “new oil” – DATA.
Such strategies come out to give an organization the gravity it needs.
But there have been certain purpose-driven campaigns, which didn’t work, out well.
So, what would be the fate of Schneider’s Green Yodha campaign?
Would this campaign perform like Aircel’s Save the Tiger campaign did?
The top management at Aircel had taken a great initiative toward a real cause but unfortunately; it didn’t resonate well with the lower level of the organization. Hence, it lacked the ‘law of publicity’ within the organization. Moreover, the audience couldn’t gather how they would help in saving the tiger population, which actually is in the hands of the state. While the brand-building initiative has been great, it didn’t hit as expected.
The “law of persistence” must be applied after the “law of publicity.”
Making “noise” is necessary, but it is not enough; the echo must endure. Brand-led projects require huge funds to almost survive indefinitely.
Will Schneider be able to support the cause day and night? One wonders.
Another apprehension is how many would actually read a note that addresses complex issues and expects a tangible action in return.
Would you proceed to take further action and participate after reading a letter from a brand and understanding what it means? Can this sensitize a growing number of people and foster a sense of community?
Most importantly is the issue class agnostic? Does it cut across all strata (especially the bottom of the pyramid)? Will it resonate with all the key stakeholders?
Finally, I believe that “People buy people first and then the company, and then they buy the product”.
Is Schneider managing to do that? Remains to be seen.
What do you say? Friends?
For more queries, you can schedule a call with our Brand Marketing Strategist