1. Set it out in the plan

‘When drafting the two-year strategy for your brand, define both social and economic goals. Whether that’s “support a community in need” or “work with the suppliers who adhere to guidelines of sustainability”, define the KPIs for these with the same rigour you define for the economic goals. 

‘When considering brand communication, think not only in terms of the share of voice and product-quality perception, but also in terms of social-good perception. Your brand communication strategy should incorporate these goals, and your engagement plan should have clear and concise actions that support it. Make sure that everything you put forward is believable and own-able by your brand – otherwise, consumers will see through it.’

2. Rethink collabs

‘While we may be well past the time when a fashion collab can excite anyone, a new breed of collaborations are springing up. They go beyond short-term commercial and PR buzz towards something with a greater social impact – and no less buzz. 

‘For example, dairy company Chobani partnered with coffee seller Trade to support a community of independent coffee roasters. The effort is spurred by a common belief that food (and coffee) can be a positive force.’

3. Behavioural contagion

‘It’s worth asking: how can we activate our brand community to do something good in society? How do we set the example of positive influence that trickles down to my customers’ communities? In the past, cigarette smoking rose and fell thanks to it; today, some areas, like food and sustainability, are subject to it. 

‘The natural human instinct to imitate and conform should be used for good. Once the pandemic is over, brands can do social-good by encouraging behavioural mimicry (and not just in terms of Instagram aesthetic). Any brand with a customer base can mobilise peer pressure.’  

Read more from Ana at andjelicaaa.com.

This article was first published in Courier Issue 35, June/July 2020. To purchase the issue or become a subscriber, head to our webshop.

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