Cultural, economic and environmental forces are re-shaping how organizations view and communicate with their stakeholders. The rise of the millennial generation and its quest for self authorship, as well as the easy access to information fueled by the Internet have changed how people and businesses seek, share and sell services. For many, changes in communication channels today are as unexpected as the shock from plunging into a frozen river.
The uncertainty of the global economy has redefined value expectations for individuals and industry alike – elevating customer service and brands’ emotional benefits as points of difference, in addition to brands’ functional benefits. And, the recognition that humans are responsible for environmental changes, along with huge shifts in energy prices, have made purpose-based branding a core business practice. Understanding of and attention to these shifts in both B2C and B2B environments, coupled with a multi-stakeholder (customer, employee, shareholder, community, supply chain) view of marketing and communications, are points of difference to win in increasingly commoditized categories. We believe this approach not only helps companies and brands play strong offense, but is fundamental to forming a strong defense in challenging times. As financial markets have proven, brand reputation is a more important element of valuation than many previously thought. And, brand reputation begins with customers’ and employees’ understanding, engagement and willingness to advocate on the behalf of brands.
We work through this lens to help organizations find critical points of leverage, and capitalize on them through communications that engage, motivate and cause constituents to act. Then, in conjunction with client teams or with our own team, put these plans into action from message development to training, creative and content development, and implementation.