Responsible, Sustainable Brand Marketing for the Future

BY Tim Londergan
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Great branding is the most powerful currency a company can have — its single-​greatest competitive advantage. People purchase products because of a story, an emotional connection they feel with a brand. What feeling does your client's brand emote? What does their brand say about the moral and ethical posture of their company? As e‑commerce sales increase, will their branding be powerful enough to stand out in a transformed world? Will their company be recognized for responsible, sustainable brand marketing for the future?

E‑commerce will comprise 16.1% of total retail sales in the U.S. in 2021. Consumer package goods manufacturers grew their 2020 e‑commerce revenues by 57% year-​over-​year. GroupM Global projects that global e‑commerce sales will grow 20% during 2021 to $5.2 trillion. They speculate that growth will level off to 15% by 2025. How long these online shopping trends will persist is anybody’s guess. But consumers won't return to old habits. So how can you future-​proof your client's branding efforts while securing their brand’s reputation?

Responsible, sustainable brand marketing for the future

It is tempting to focus budgets toward more immediate "shopper marketing" efforts and away from brand-​building campaigns. This would be a mistake. New research from GroupM shows that strong brands are of even greater value in a world that is more dependent on e‑commerce. 59% of consumers know what brand they are going to buy in an offline setting. That number rises to 62% for online purchases. Shoppers are more likely to buy top-​of-​mind products and strong brands are more likely to be top of mind. Therefore, your client's brand marketing must be compatible with the shopper marketing message.

Advertisers must give more weight to social factors when calculating the value of their investments. Engaging in sustainable marketing for the long term means embracing ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) trends. Marketers can actively direct funds toward socially conscious organizations. And they can identify vendors and media partners who share their values and concerns. Durable and versatile brands are better positioned in the eyes of consumers if they consistently focus on what they believe in. This is reflected in their operations, their communications and their investments.

Changing your client's view of the online marketplace

Creating a marketplace strategy that connects brand stories to trigger preference and purchasing is now critical. You must imagine digital marketplaces as environments for delivering brand experiences, not simply, transactional channels. Your client must tell the story of their brand in a way that builds trust with prospective customers and allows them to glimpse the moral and ethical values of their business. These actions set the stage for responsible, sustainable brand marketing for the future.

The more coherent a company is about its beliefs, the more stakeholders will trust that the business holds those views and the more committed they will be to the brand over time. When a brand’s values represent an environment in which we all want to live, and its investment dollars are carefully arranged to support those values, the brand, its customers and the media are rewarded in the end. To ensure that your client's messaging is connecting with their target audience, check out their preferences in the AudienceScan profiles listed in AdMall by SalesFuel.