In this day and age, it is not only important for a brand to have a great product or service, they must be authentic, too. You might ask yourself, what does that mean?
It means a brand must be transparent, consistent in messaging, and most importantly honest. According to Stackla data, 90% of consumers said authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like and support.
Here is how a brand can be authentic.
Invest in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
One of the best ways to show a brand’s authenticity is to associate it with a social cause. A perfect example is Patagonia, they not only make their apparel from recycled plastics but also pledge at least 1% of their sales or 10% of their pre-tax profits (whichever is more) to environmental grassroots groups. They are a good example because the CSR a company invests in should make sense for the brand, in this instance using recycled plastics and giving back to the environment is honest and true to their brand promise.
CSR is also important with Millennials and GenZ:
» According to Marketing Dive, 82% of GenZers say they trust a company more if it uses images of real customers in its advertising, while 72% said they’re more likely to buy from a company that contributes to social causes.
» SocialMediaToday found that 90% of Millennials want a brand to be authentic when deciding which brands they support.
When a company invests in CSR, it leads to the consumer creating an emotional connection with a brand.
Striking a Chord with Consumers
Creating an emotional connection with consumers leads to increased brand loyalty. Apple is a great example of a company that creates connections with consumer’s emotions. Apple does this by using a modern, simplistic design that makes a person want to own its products.
Harvard Business Review found that brands utilize “emotional motivators,” which include phrases like “stand out from the crowd,” “have confidence in the future,” and “enjoy a sense of well-being.” Our emotions are what drives us and therefore many brands focus on creating that connection with the consumer.
Be Real, Do Not Be Fake
Would you rather have a friend who is honest or one that lies to you and cannot be trusted? Well, the same goes for brands– no one likes to be deceived or tricked into doing or buying something.
Brands can accomplish this by knowing who they are, committing to something that makes sense, and making the brand appear to be human.
A brand can accomplish this by regularly communicating, owning mistakes, and showing it cares. Another important part of being real is to listen to consumers and communicate with them.
Brand authenticity is not rocket science, but it is a marketing science that is extremely effective and one that consumers will respond to.
An authentic brand can take many different shapes or forms, but whatever a brand decides to do they need to be honest and real with their consumers.
Is your company’s brand reliable with your audience? Contact us, and we can help you develop a marketing strategy that establishes your brand’s authenticity.
Check out our previous Insight, “Creative Content Strategies for Brand Awareness,” for more tips to tailoring your brand for your target audience.