Capture the next-gen consumer with values-led marketing

by Samuel Pordengerg May 30, 2023 News
Capture the next-gen consumer with values-led marketing

In the last few years, it has become clear that a company's values are the most important factor in consumers' buying decisions.

Even though taking a moral stand might seem like an unnecessary risk, the cost of staying silent may be even greater.

Customers want to do good through their buying power. They want to feel good about their choices, but they don't want to support businesses that are unethical or unsustainable.

If brands want to achieve longevity, they need to keep their focus on social activism.

Values-led marketing helps brands connect with their target audience. I can say with confidence that the payoff in the end has been worth it because I am a person who runs a values led business. I have had to part ways with clients who weren't the right fit, but I have found many more who were, and I have achieved great things with them.

A growing trend

The rise of ethical consumers has been going on for a while. More than one-third of global consumers are willing to pay more for eco-friendly alternatives, and close to 90 percent of survey respondents in the US said they would boycott a brand for irresponsible business actions. Consumers know that their impact can change things. Their clout has gone up a lot thanks to social media.

Even though taking a moral stand might seem like an unnecessary risk, the cost of staying silent may be even greater.

The high-stakes nature of doing business in a world with a 24 hour news cycle, online reviews and a highly competitive global market is highlighted by the conventional wisdom that bad news travels twice as fast.

Values-based positioning shines against this backdrop. A brand's personality is what makes it stand out from the crowd. A brand's values are what make it different from other brands.

Being brave, authentic and transparent can have benefits beyond the bottom line. Values-led brands are seen as more attractive employers, better candidates for brand partnerships and valued members of the community

The rise of the ethical consumer

Climate change, environmental destruction, problematic supply chains that encompass child labor and sweatshops, toxic work environments and more are all related to the success of values-ledbusiness.

In order to establish a baseline of acceptability for a growing group of customers, ethical practices such as diversity and inclusion are important.

Gen Z is willing to walk away from their jobs over a clash of values with their employers, as consumers they're even pickier when it comes to where they spend their money A brand's commitment to social causes and its particular values have become part of the total customer experience. Status is conveyed to those who align with it.

Consumers have shown they don’t just want to buy your products. They also want to feel good or at least not feel bad while doing it.

Consumers don't just want to buy your products They don't want to feel bad while doing it.

Among the brands that have been known for being values-led from the start are TOMS, which sends a pair of shoes to a child in need with every purchase, and New Belgium Brewing Company, which is known for ensuring 99.9.

Values are important to the extent that up to 42 percent of customers will abandon a brand if they don't align with their beliefs, and 21 percent will leave for good.

How to embrace values-led marketing

How can leaders better connect with their audience? The steps are listed here.

1. Find your why

Identifying the values, priorities and experiences that motivate them is the first step in the process.

Taking an authentic position can be different from brand to brand. Businesses need to make sure they believe in the values they are trying to project. The material will be used to tell a story that will engage consumers and serve as a point of difference.

2. Not everyone will like what you’re doing

Your integrity and reputation are more important than being liked by everyone when you are a values-led business.

Finding the right fit for your brand is one part of the values-led journey.

3. Set clear boundaries

Being values-led means you may come across business practices that are not in line with your beliefs, or you may be asked to do something that doesn't jive with your beliefs.

Stakeholders know where you stand and it is important to speak up early.

4. Highlight your brand’s social benefits

A strong message can be sent via social media. Images and video can be used to show your business in action. Pack orders using sustainable materials, donate to a cause, meet with community leaders, and so on.

It is easy to include these values in brand content on all platforms.

5. Follow through with solid action

Taking a stand against something that goes against your core values is one way to put your company's values into action.

On International Women's Day, for example, brands can make a social media statement of support by putting their mission and values up on their website.

Values will lead the way forward

The purpose, substance and personality of brands are injected by values. It's how businesses draw the line on the things they won't compromise on and broadcast it to their audience.

In a crowded marketplace, it is this authenticity that will cut through all the noise.

This is a chance for brands to tell their stories. A long-term relationship with target audiences can be established with a consistent narrative and action.

Bonding with customers over shared values is what will make a difference. Being open about your beliefs is a way to get attention. It is this authenticity that will cut through the noise.

The founder of Hello Mother is a warm, funny, creative and values driven person. There is a portfolio of progressive brands under his wing.