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Brand Substance Handbook - Green Unplugged Becky Willan

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The presentation was given by Becky Willan at Green Unplugged and was intended to be a practical handbook to help companies build their brand substance. This means to rely less on inflating their …

The presentation was given by Becky Willan at Green Unplugged and was intended to be a practical handbook to help companies build their brand substance. This means to rely less on inflating their brand image and more on using sustainability principles to create value in peoples lives.

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  • Thought the notes from the presentation might be helpful...

    Slide 1
    simple, pragmatic framework for using sustainability to build brands – a handbook
    not green or eco or ethical – complex subjects, fraught with ambiguities and trade-offs
    plus that’s not what people actually always want
    focus on how sustainability thinking can help solve one of the biggest problems faced by marketers today?
    i.e. what to do in the face of declining brand trust, respect and loyalty among consumers?

    Slide 2
    starting point is the statement “image is everything”
    brand image has always been a big deal in marketing - adding intangible qualities to normal products or services.
    No longer adequate for building brands

    Slide 3
    Rory Sutherland at TED October 2009 - as an industry, we should focus on adding intangible value to tackle depletion of natural resources.
    more intangible value you add, the fewer material goods you need to sell.
    example from Ogilvy Canada.

    Slide 4
    ad campaign for diamond Shreddies.
    perfect example of intangible added value, won integrated Clio
    my question is, does this approach, an advertising approach really help to build a brand in the minds of consumers? It is really sustainable?

    Slide 5
    sustainability is only one of the big things that has happened. Or not happened
    other big thing is digital technology.
    the world is more fragmented and yet closer together.
    some fundamental implications for brand marketing, because it has changed people and their perspective on the world.
    people have a knowledge of global issues and a visibility of organisations that was unthinkable just a few years ago.

    Slide 6
    a new sense of clarity.
    brands face a new world in which many of the old rules no longer apply. There three big implications

    Slide 7
    old world, your brand was a big wall between the inside and outside parts of your company.


    Slide 8
    now, no false barrier between your customers and employees and all the other people affected by your business.
    new and more collaborative ways of working - solve shared problems and tackle shared opportunities.

    Slide 9
    used to think about media as where best to spend your advertising budget.
    now, everything you are is media and everything you do is communications.
    no matter how far down supply chain, almost everything that a company does is consumer facing and can build or detract from way people see your brand

    Slide 10
    used to be ok to tell people you were doing a great job.
    sustainability communications - green messaging in automotive industry

    Slide 11
    now it’s about doing more and saying less. focus on actions and not just words

    Slide 12
    So, because it focuses on intangible value, conventional advertising techniques are not equipped to help brands in this new world.
    People expect more from the companies they engage with. Real value. Not intangible value.
    Rory Sutherland’s example is funny and smart, BUT it lacks substance. It lacks authenticity. Without substance you’ve only got spin. Big implications for consumer loyalty, trust, respect.
    Like the emperor’s clothes. People are starting to see through all the hype.

    Slide 13
    Henley centre = since 1999 the 17 largest iconic brands - 16% decline in consumer TRUST.
    The Brand Asset Valuator, 2008 = decline in brand respect of 12% over 12 years.
    The Carson Marketing Group. In 2000, 4 in 10 people had a preference for only one brand. In 2007 1 in 10 had this preference.

    Slide 14
    Alex Bogusky’s book Baked In, argues that brands need to build new relationships with their customers and the culture they participate in.

    Slide 15
    Common sense!
    Work to create value. Buy stuff from companies that meet their needs.
    Branding is used to add intangible qualities to try and get more value from people.
    But surely, smart people will want something tangible for their money other than invented images and associations.
    Common sense says that brands will need to give people something more.

    Slide 16
    common sense says that marketing should be about reciprocity. Reciprocity is quite a big deal in explaining relationships between people.
    Believer in reciprocity. Believe that brands can and should create value in people’s lives. And the more good they do in people’s lives, the more they will get in return.
    And this is of course, where sustainability comes in.

    no means the first people to try to resolve the disconnect about value.
    curiously meaty analogies on the subject of where sustainability meets communications.

    Slide 17
    enlightened marketer says we need more sausage and less sizzle.
    leading sustainability communications agency says stop selling the sausage and think about the sizzle
    actually need both

    Slide 18
    brand substance. It describes brands that aim to create positive impacts in people’s lives.

    Slide 19
    ME – value for people, as individuals
    don’t necessarily need to be about sustainability.
    Apple Genius bar… helping me to learn about my product and how to get the most out of it
    Philips Liveable cities… improving peoples health & wellbeing
    Starbucks… Adding a moment of reflection to my morning coffee

    Slide 20
    MY WORLD – value for the communities they are part of
    Cultural movements, causes, connections
    Nike Live Strong… Engaging men who play sport around an issue that affects men
    Starbucks… play an active roll in local communities i.e. a community events notice board.
    Pepsi Refresh

    Slide 21
    THE WORLD – value for the world they live in
    Nike Grind… Incentivising people to bring back old trainers
    Starbucks… Reusable coffee containers
    Fiat EcoDrive – helping people be a little bit greener

    Sustainability thinking not sustainability communications.
    just a smarter way of building brands.

    begins with the consumer.
    so if you thinking about applying this kind of thinking, here are a few pointers on where to start…

    Slide 22
    1) Do you understand your target audience?
    2) Where and how are you doing this? If you’re a marketer and haven’t yet spoken to your CSR department, now might be a good time!
    3) What are your strengths as a company that could create value for people?
    4) Is it about finding news ways to communicate the great things you’re already doing? Or completely new projects and initiatives that make the company better at creating value for people?

    Slide 23
    considers how well brands score on measures that relate to at least ONE of the ‘me’ ‘my world’ or ‘the world’ spheres.
    BAV = brands that exceed consumers’ expectations in having a positive impact in their lives.
    Firms of Endearment = selects brands for outstanding social performance
    Good Brands report 2009 = global influencers rank best brands on environmental performance, social contribution and innovation.

    Slide 24
    Passion brands? Or brands with substance?
    Caveat on research – probably more “me” and “my world” rather than “the world”

    Slide 25
    closer look at behaviours that build substance.
    Big & Small
    Big = response to changing consumer landscape
    Small brands nearly always this way = more authentic = threat

    Brands with substance are…

    Slide 26
    Responsible = demonstrate responsibility about the way their company impacts on and improves people’s lives.
    1998 McDonald’s UK made the switch to using free range eggs in its breakfast menu. By 2008 everything from the Big Mac sauce to the Chicken McNuggets coating was made with free range eggs.
    Makes McD only large scale chain to exclusively use free-range in UK.

    Slide 27
    PepsiCo commitment - healthiness including reducing the average amount of sodium, saturated fat and sugar per serving

    Slide 28
    In’N’Out Burger, business, not response to pressure from stakeholders.
    pride themselves on making everything the old-fashioned way, using fresh locally sourced ingredients, free of additives & preservatives.
    pay its employees significantly more than state minimum wage.

    Slide 29
    Innovative = express a constant spirit of innovation to excite customers and sustainably differentiate what they do.
    Ocado makes a big deal about being a greener way to shop, using green delivery slots and low emission vans.

    Slide 30
    All pretty innovative BUT
    Hubbub, like Ocado, is a food delivery service. But unlike Ocado, Hubbub only delivers food from your local shops.
    They do all the things Ocado do, and even more.

    Slide 31
    Full of purpose = actively express a focused overall direction that inspires people and other companies to follow their lead.
    Puma launched PumaVision, and a four-point tool to ensure that they stay true to their vision of being Fair, Honest, Positive and Creative in everything that they do.
    Packaging system = reduce the paper used by 65% and carbon emissions by 10,000 tons per year.

    Slide 32
    GoLite. The purpose behind GoLite is quite simple “that experiencing nature would be better with less. Less weight, less fuss, less waste....more fun”.
    aim past neutrality towards becoming “net positive” in terms of environmental and social impact across value chain

    Slide 33
    Engaging = develop meaningful collaborative relationships with customers and other people who are affected by their business.
    My Starbucks Idea launched in 2008 and over 100,000 ideas
    conversation starters on cups to enable new conversations between customers and ways to incentivize people to use reusable mugs.

    Slide 34
    Take Look Mum No Hands as an example.
    Not only does it serve great food and coffee, but you can go and talk bikes and even get repairs done there too.

    Slide 35
    I wonder how many notes Starbucks get notes like this?
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  • simple, pragmatic framework for using sustainability to build brands – a handbook not green or eco or ethical – complex subjects, fraught with ambiguities and trade-offs plus that’s not what people actually always want focus on how sustainability thinking can help solve one of the biggest problems faced by marketers today? i.e. what to do in the face of declining brand trust, respect and loyalty among consumers?
  • starting point is the statement “image is everything” brand image has always been a big deal in marketing - adding intangible qualities to normal products or services. No longer adequate for building brands
  • Rory Sutherland at TED October 2009 - as an industry, we should focus on adding intangible value to tackle depletion of natural resources. more intangible value you add, the fewer material goods you need to sell. example from Ogilvy Canada.
  • ad campaign for diamond Shreddies. perfect example of intangible added value, won integrated Clio my question is, does this approach, an advertising approach really help to build a brand in the minds of consumers? It is really sustainable?
  • sustainability is only one of the big things that has happened. Or not happened other big thing is digital technology. the world is more fragmented and yet closer together. some fundamental implications for brand marketing, because it has changed people and their perspective on the world. people have a knowledge of global issues and a visibility of organisations that was unthinkable just a few years ago.
  • a new sense of clarity. brands face a new world in which many of the old rules no longer apply. There three big implications
  • old world, your brand was a big wall between the inside and outside parts of your company.
  • now, no false barrier between your customers and employees and all the other people affected by your business. new and more collaborative ways of working - solve shared problems and tackle shared opportunities.
  • used to think about media as where best to spend your advertising budget. now, everything you are is media and everything you do is communications. no matter how far down supply chain, almost everything that a company does is consumer facing and can build or detract from way people see your brand
  • used to be ok to tell people you were doing a great job. sustainability communications - green messaging in automotive industry
  • now it’s about doing more and saying less. focus on actions and not just words.
  • So, because it focuses on intangible value, conventional advertising techniques are not equipped to help brands in this new world. People expect more from the companies they engage with. Real value. Not intangible value. Rory Sutherland’s example is funny and smart, BUT it lacks substance. It lacks authenticity. Without substance you’ve only got spin. Big implications for consumer loyalty, trust, respect. Like the emperor’s clothes. People are starting to see through all the hype.
  • Henley centre = since 1999 the 17 largest iconic brands - 16% decline in consumer TRUST. The Brand Asset Valuator, 2008 = decline in brand respect of 12% over 12 years. The Carson Marketing Group. In 2000, 4 in 10 people had a preference for only one brand. In 2007 1 in 10 had this preference.
  • Alex Bogusky’s book Baked In, argues that brands need to build new relationships with their customers and the culture they participate in.
  • Common sense! Work to create value. Buy stuff from companies that meet their needs. Branding is used to add intangible qualities to try and get more value from people. But surely, smart people will want something tangible for their money other than invented images and associations. Common sense says that brands will need to give people something more.
  • common sense says that marketing should be about reciprocity. Reciprocity is quite a big deal in explaining relationships between people. Believer in reciprocity. Believe that brands can and should create value in people’s lives. And the more good they do in people’s lives, the more they will get in return. And this is of course, where sustainability comes in.   no means the first people to try to resolve the disconnect about value. curiously meaty analogies on the subject of where sustainability meets communications.
  • enlightened marketer says we need more sausage and less sizzle. leading sustainability communications agency says stop selling the sausage and think about the sizzle need both
  • brand substance. It describes brands that aim to create positive impacts in people’s lives.
  • ME – value for people, as individuals doesn’t necessarily need to be about sustainability. Apple Genius bar… helping me to learn about my product and how to get the most out of it Philips Liveable cities… improving peoples health & wellbeing Starbucks… Adding a moment of reflection to my morning coffee
  • MY WORLD – value for the communities they are part of Cultural movements, causes, connections Nike Live Strong… Engaging men who play sport around an issue that affects men Starbucks… play an active roll in local communities i.e. a community events notice board. Pepsi Refresh
  • THE WORLD – value for the world they live in Nike Grind… Incentivising people to bring back old trainers Starbucks… Reusable coffee containers Fiat EcoDrive – helping people be a little bit greener   Sustainability thinking not sustainability communications. just a smarter way of building brands.   begins with the consumer. so if you thinking about applying this kind of thinking, here are a few pointers on where to start…
  • Do you understand your target audience? Where and how are you doing this? If you’re a marketer and haven’t yet spoken to your CSR department, now might be a good time! What are your strengths as a company that could create value for people? Is it about finding news ways to communicate the great things you’re already doing? Or completely new projects and initiatives that make the company better at creating value for people?
  • considers how well brands score on measures that relate to at least ONE of the ‘me’ ‘my world’ or ‘the world’ spheres. BAV = brands that exceed consumers’ expectations in having a positive impact in their lives. Firms of Endearment = selects brands for outstanding social performance Good Brands report 2009 = global influencers rank best brands on environmental performance, social contribution and innovation.
  • Passion brands? Or brands with substance? Caveat on research – probably more “me” and “my world” rather than “the world”
  • closer look at behaviours that build substance. Big & Small Big = response to changing consumer landscape Small brands nearly always this way = more authentic = threat   Brands with substance are…
  • Responsible = demonstrate responsibility about the way their company impacts on and improves people’s lives. 1998 McDonald’s UK made the switch to using free range eggs in its breakfast menu. By 2008 everything from the Big Mac sauce to the Chicken McNuggets coating was made with free range eggs. Makes McD only large scale chain to exclusively use free-range in UK.
  • PepsiCo commitment - healthiness including reducing the average amount of sodium, saturated fat and sugar per serving
  • In’N’Out Burger, business, not response to pressure from stakeholders. pride themselves on making everything the old-fashioned way, using fresh locally sourced ingredients, free of additives & preservatives. pay its employees significantly more than state minimum wage.
  • Innovative = express a constant spirit of innovation to excite customers and sustainably differentiate what they do. Ocado makes a big deal about being a greener way to shop, using green delivery slots and low emission vans.
  • All pretty innovative BUT Hubbub, like Ocado, is a food delivery service. But unlike Ocado, Hubbub only delivers food from your local shops. They do all the things Ocado do, and even more.
  • Full of purpose = actively express a focused overall direction that inspires people and other companies to follow their lead. Puma launched PumaVision, and a four-point tool to ensure that they stay true to their vision of being Fair, Honest, Positive and Creative in everything that they do. Packaging system = reduce the paper used by 65% and carbon emissions by 10,000 tons per year.
  • GoLite. The purpose behind GoLite is quite simple “that experiencing nature would be better with less. Less weight, less fuss, less waste....more fun”. aim past neutrality towards becoming “net positive” in terms of environmental and social impact across value chain
  • Engaging = develop meaningful collaborative relationships with customers and other people who are affected by their business. My Starbucks Idea launched in 2008 and over 100,000 ideas conversation starters on cups to enable new conversations between customers and ways to incentivize people to use reusable mugs.
  • Take Look Mum No Hands as an example. Not only does it serve great food and coffee, but you can go and talk bikes and even get repairs done there too.
  • I wonder how many notes Starbucks get notes like this?
  • Transcript

    • 1. Becky Willan Director Given London
    • 2. GE IS G IMA TH IN E VE RY
    • 3. 16% 12% 4/10 to 1/10
    • 4. BRAN D VA LUE VALU E bran d
    • 5. es sir de goals s ed ne
    • 6. ca re us ltu e cu s connections
    • 7. ur iss vio ue ha s be relatedness
    • 8. Do you understand your target audience from a 1 “me, my world, the world” perspective? 2 How is your company creating value for them, their world and the world? 3 What assets do you have at your disposal? How will you deliver brand substance inside and 4 outside your company?
    • 9. 2/3 + 3/3
    • 10. Thank you! Becky Willan becky@givenlondon.com

    ×