Share these talks and lectures with your colleaguesInvite colleagues
Brand purpose, authenticity and impact measurement
COVID-19 has changed the world. The post-pandemic world will not be the same as it was before March 2020. In a world where many marketing and business elements were already experiencing a technological revolution and having to adapt practices, COVID-19 accelerated change, eliciting a rapid move to a virtual world. Alongside new digital behaviours there are greater demands on organisations from stakeholders to demonstrate behaviours and actions that engender trust. Customers want reassurance that personal data and privacy will be protected by organisations with good governance in place. Stakeholders also have growing awareness of environmental issues and their power of influence on organisational behaviour and sustainability. Organisations face increased pressure too to behave ethically on social issues around diversity, equality and inclusion. All of these factors place greater demands on organisations to demonstrate clear brand purpose that inspires trust. And actions must match words. Stakeholders and customers will not accept empty promises or deceptive practices. The COVID-19 pandemic has also wrought political and economic disruption, and stakeholders — customers, employees and shareholders — have increasingly sought refuge in brands as trust in government, state institutions and media has fallen. This disruption has also seen social media overtaking traditional media as a source of news and information. This rapid change has created both opportunity and challenge for communicators and marketers. This paper suggests that, to thrive in the post-pandemic environment, organisations that seek to reassert their purpose and values and demonstrate authentic behaviour in delivering on their promises are likely to establish deeper trust and a strong reputation. To measure the impact of purpose, authenticity and trust, it is necessary to develop a framework that evaluates and takes into account exposure, comment, enablement and interaction; considers multiple stakeholder and audience groups; and aligns communications goals with organisational objectives.
The full article is available to institutions that have subscribed to the journal.
Jenny Caven is the former Director of External Affairs at Slimming World. Jenny is passionate about working collaboratively to build high-performing teams invested in creating effective campaigns that have real impact. She leads award-winning communications and campaign teams and is motivated to make a real difference by developing compelling, innovative projects that ignite interest, inspire and influence. She is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and a chartered practitioner and a corporate member of the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA). She is an advisory board member on Ragan’s Communications Week. Jenny has extensive experience in issues and crisis and reputation management, working with internal stakeholders, senior board members, legal advisers and policymakers. She has worked across the UK, USA and Africa, in-house and in agency, developing communications strategies and executing programmes that increase recognition, engage stakeholders through strong relationships and build sustainable and impactful programmes that make a real difference to people’s lives.