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Did you know purpose-driven businesses increased brand value by 175% over the last 12 years, compared to the 70% growth rate of brands with no specific purpose1? This statistic from Kantar Consulting’s Purpose 2020 study that gathered insights from 20,000 consumers highlights a powerful trend: consumers increasingly align their purchasing decisions with their values. 

In an age where trust and authenticity are paramount, purpose-first marketing emerges as a transformative strategy for small businesses. Prioritizing genuine storytelling about a company’s mission and impact through purpose-driven marketing can forge strong, lasting connections with customers, ultimately driving purpose and profit.

What is purpose-driven marketing?

Purpose-driven marketing is a strategy that places a business’s mission and societal impact at the forefront of its marketing efforts2. Unlike traditional advertising tactics that focus solely on product features or benefits, purpose-driven marketing emphasizes authentic narratives that resonate with consumers on a deeper emotional level. This approach matters because it reflects the growing consumer demand for brands that stand for more than just profits.

Brands that are transparent about their values and actions build stronger consumer trust and loyalty. The 2020 Zeno Strength of Purpose Study revealed that 94% of consumers believe it is important that the companies they engage with have a strong purpose, and 82% of consumers said that they support a company when they believe its purpose. Additionally, they are 4.1x more likely to trust a purpose-driven brand and 4.5x more likely to recommend it to friends and family3. This trust is not a fleeting sentiment but a foundation for long-term relationships that benefit the brand and its customers.

The benefits of purpose-driven marketing

Beyond trust and loyalty, purpose-driven marketing offers many benefits that can significantly enhance a brand’s position and market performance. Here are some key advantages:

Increased brand differentiation

A strong sense of purpose can set a brand apart from its competitors in a crowded and competitive marketplace. Brands that are vocal and active about their purpose stand out and attract attention. This differentiation is crucial, especially for small businesses seeking a niche. Project ROI’s study found that companies committed to environmental and social responsibility boast a 6% higher market value4

Greater financial performance

Businesses that focus on purpose-driven marketing see improved financial performance. When consumers trust and believe in a brand, they are willing to pay a premium for its products or services. As a result, they enjoy 20% more revenue than those neglecting social and environmental purpose4

Enhanced employee engagement and retention

Employees who believe in their company’s mission are more engaged and motivated. A sense of purpose can lead to higher job satisfaction and lower turnover rates. According to PwC’s “Putting Purpose to Work” report, Millennials are 5.3x more likely to feel connected to their job and less inclined to leave, while non-Millennials are 2.3x less likely to leave5. This means less time and resources spent on recruiting and training new employees and more continuity in the quality of service and expertise offered to customers.

Long-term sustainability

Purpose-driven marketing contributes to a business’s long-term sustainability. Businesses can create a more resilient and adaptable brand by focusing on a mission beyond profit. This long-term perspective encourages continuous improvement and innovation, ensuring the brand remains relevant and successful.

Subscribe to impact

For small businesses, the journey to purpose-driven marketing can seem daunting. Where to begin? How to articulate and embed purpose into the core of your marketing strategy? These are common challenges, but the good news is that solutions like the Plastic Bank Impact Subscription can guide businesses of all sizes in this transformation.

Plastic Bank Impact Subscription provides businesses with a tangible way to support environmental sustainability and social equity, integrating shared value into their core strategies. Impact subscribers commit to collecting a predetermined amount of plastic bottles by community members. These members exchange collected plastic for money and social benefits at Plastic Bank branches, creating pathways out of poverty while contributing to environmental sustainability.

Upon subscribing, businesses select their desired level of impact and gain access to a Professional Impact Account that offers a range of tools and resources to help businesses of all sizes subscribe to impact and effectively communicate their commitment to sustainability, such as:

Retailer Toolkit: This toolkit provides point-of-sale printables highlighting your business’s commitment to sustainability, making it easy to communicate impact directly to customers.

Dedicated Impact Page: This public-facing webpage showcases your business’s environmental efforts and the positive outcomes of your contributions.

Marketing Resources: These include social media templates, photos, videos, and campaign toolkits to help you share your impact stories effectively.

Impact Certificate: You can download and display certificates showing the amount of plastic collected and recycled, adding credibility and authenticity to your sustainability claims.

Start small, think big

It’s okay for businesses not to know where to begin with purpose-driven marketing. The key is to start small and gradually build up your efforts. Look for solutions that can guide you and work for your unique needs, like the Plastic Bank Impact Subscription. Taking incremental steps allows you to integrate purpose into your marketing strategy, engage your community, and make a significant impact over time.

If you’re ready to start your journey towards purpose-driven marketing and want to learn more about the Plastic Bank Impact Subscription, visit Together, we can create a better future for your business, our planet, and collection communities across Southeast Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

  1. “Purpose 2020,” Kantar Consulting 
  2. Khalem Charles, “What Is Purpose-Driven Marketing?” Ad Council, February 1, 2021, 
  3. “Unveiling The 2020 Zeno Strength of Purpose Study,” Zeno, June 17, 2020, 
  4. Steve Rochlin et. al, “Defining the Competitive and Financial Advantages of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability,” Project ROI, 
  5. “Putting Purpose to Work: A study of purpose in the workplace,” PwC, 2016, 

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