In our latest white paper we list five fundamental principles that drive our efforts to help your brand thrive in the 21st century. Here, we explore one of our drivers: “truth, authenticity, and credibility.”Here’s an explanatory extract from the white paper:
“Emotive brand strategies are built out of what is already true about your brand. As such, the new purpose and behaviors we propose are authentic to what your brand is, and are welcomed by customers and employees as credible offerings from your brand.”
But exactly what “truth” are we seeking? Many mistakenly assume we’re talking about their all-too-familiar list of features and benefits. However, our pursuit of meaningful truth actually focuses us on the human, social, and environmental outcomes of those features and benefits, as well as the way in which your firm does its business.
Our search for your brand’s truth is an exploration of what lies behind what is already evident and well-known about your brand. It is our way of identifying the meaning that lies now hidden in what your business does and how it does it. This analysis flows from the truth, yet illuminates that truth in a way that is more personally relevant and emotionally important to people.
Why do this?
A primary ambition of emotive branding is to forge more meaningful connections with the people important to your brand’s success. Such connections don’t readily flow from your standard laundry list of rational features and benefits. Rather, meaning lives among, in between, and around those facts, in an intangible space defined by what all people seek on a deep and universal emotional level.
This space is created by the fact that all people are seeking to have a greater sense of security in their lives, to feel more connected to others and what’s important, and to have the sensation of personal, intellectual, physical, and emotional growth.
People are seeking these meaningful realizations in many ways across their lives. In the world of brands, new actions to build links to these powerful needs can make all the difference. They can change the way people think, feel, and act when they buy, and as they do their jobs. Indeed, brands that show how what they do increases both the individual and collective well-being, forge the meaningful connections that help them thrive.
By blending the rational and emotional into a new, more powerful cocktail of meaning, we help your brand create a more appealing and unique way of being. Over time, these meaningful truths become more evident in what you do, and they become more appreciated and admired by your people.
Finally, these meaningful truths fuel the promise we create for your brand. This is a promise that is meant to lift your business to another level, closer to the hearts and minds of your customers and employees, and further from your competitors. This promise needs to ring true, be based on more than facts, and be deliberately aspirational in nature. It needs the power of the higher-order meaning of the truths we identify to move your organization.
Meaningful truth is not “Truthiness”
“Truthiness” is Steven Colbert’s way of saying not everything is quite as true as we may think. Truthiness has been defined as, “The quality of stating concepts one wishes or believes to be true, rather than the facts.”
We know that we cannot veer one inch from the truth because it simply wouldn’t be credible. People can see right through claims, promises, and boasts built upon Truthiness. Going this way may work at the start, but very soon people will sense the gap between what you promise and what you actually deliver.
Make your brand promise authentic to what you really do. Ensure credibility through an unwavering devotion to the truth. Create meaningful work by offering people insight into your bigger truths.
Emotive Brand is a San Francisco brand strategy agency.
For more information on brand promise and brand strategy: Brand Promise: the what, why, and how of great brand strategy