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Higher Purpose Key To Success in 2021

Deloitte Global Marketing Trends Report of 2021 findings show how purpose driven companies are set to successfully navigate a COVID-19 world.

Photo by Smart on Unsplash

The report states that organisations that know WHY they exist and WHO they are built to serve, may be uniquely positioned to navigate unprecedented change brought on by the global pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been the biggest reset for brands in a century. Almost overnight, companies have had to change how they create content, market services, distribute products, and take care of newly remote teams. Yet purpose-driven companies are likely already better positioned to ride out this time of extraordinary change—they know why they exist and who they’re built to serve, regardless of what they sell today.

A purpose-driven company articulates why the organisation exists at all and puts they WHY at the center of everything it does.

Creating a bigger “why”

When it comes to brands, people often limit purpose to why a brand sells its products and services. However, a purpose-driven company articulates why the organization exists at all and puts the why at the center of everything it does.

It holds itself accountable to meeting these goals by measuring its own progress. And its people are enthusiastic about the purpose-driven activities they do at work.

Living up to brand purpose while also being a purpose-driven company can be a challenge in any environment—and it’s especially tough in a pandemic.

The report found that when companies’ crisis responses are driven by a holistic purpose, they garner more attention and consumer interest. In its survey of 2,447 global consumers, 79% recall certain brands responding to COVID-19 by helping their customers, workforces, and communities.

Permanence and perspective

If there’s a golden rule for purpose-driven companies - from small start-ups to big legacy brands - it’s that it takes cooperation across the organization to sustain purpose over the long run. The good news is that CMOs and their marketing teams can help move purpose from concept to reality.

Think about it: Marketers are uniquely positioned to articulate the why these days; they have much more visibility into consumer behaviour as technology amplifies consumer preferences. But driving home purpose can require far more than being a customer expert.1 Marketers can and should take an “outside-in” consumer perspective to the C-suite and executive teams. Especially if your business is in an industry addressing one of the many essential needs that have gained importance in the pandemic. That can be your shot at demonstrating the value of purpose to all of your stakeholders.

If there’s a golden rule for purpose-driven companies – from small start-ups to big legacy brands – it’s that it takes cooperation across the organisation to sustain purpose over the long run.

Trust and transparency

Our research shows that consumers are watching how brands respond to this

crisis—and are changing their buying preferences in response. To maintain public trust, companies can’t just pick and choose when they lean on purpose.

Essentially, when companies amplify purpose, it comes to life. And as purpose lives consistently across the organization, it can, in turn, offer hope to customers, employees, and all other stakeholders watching what companies are doing. Even better, it can possibly change the world.

Guided by an authentic, enterprise wide purpose, these organisations turn tough decisions into simple choices.

Bringing purpose to life

The report urges readers to envision ways to embed purpose across your entire organization. Can you articulate both a brand purpose and a companywide purpose? Are they working together> Are there opportunities to align your purpose with social responsibility?


Give your marketing team free rein to experiment with creative ways to message your purpose. Let your stakeholders explicitly know how your company is living out its purpose.


Finally, the report recommends companies educate its entire organization on the intent and benefits of purpose and establishing measurable goals to help ensure you’re holding your company accountable to your stated purpose.

Compiled by Suzanne Kounkel, Amy Silverstein and Kathleen Peeters.

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