We always say that companies need a strong purpose. Why do I exist? What am I here for? However, a lot of purpose-led conversations that marketing makes is what used to be corporate social responsibility.
When you stand back and look at purpose in its truest sense of “why are we here” and “what do we do” and ask these fundamental kind of questions, then I think that every great brand has to have a good purpose.
I would also say that there is absolutely no doubt that millennial employees want to work for companies that we have a more ethical approach to business and the environment that we inhabit. I think that’s a good thing.
The best example is what happened in the UK elections. The Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour Party managed to connect with the young people like nobody has done in years. Where he connected was with a values based thinking “what kind of society do you want to live in” and resoundingly they said they wanted to live in a society with free healthcare, young people having a right to education and so on. That’s the millennial generation speaking loud and clear.
On that basis alone, you have to say that there is something in purpose led branding. That’s how it’s showing up in politics. In ten years, these millennials will be running companies around the world. So we will find out a lot more about how purpose-led brands evolve.