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    March 17, 2021
    5 minute read

    How to Communicate Brand Values on the Digital Shelf

    by: Christian Hassold
    “Don’t hold the activist banner; turn people into activists.”
    — Christian Hassold, VP of Strategy, EMEA at Salsify

    With the power millennials have in the economy today, the rising trend of mission-based brands must come into focus at every organization.

    As the need for purpose-driven brands and products continues to rise, brands need to build their mission and purpose-driven values and communicate these values on the digital shelf.

    Ecommerce channels are becoming increasingly popular, and retaining the brand story and brand mission through your digital shelf experiences becomes more necessary simultaneously.

    Why Establishing a Brand Mission is Important

    Consumers are putting this activism into their purchasing decisions too. A recent study found that 65% of Millennials believe that they can influence a company through a purchase. Sustainability has become a higher priority for consumers, with one-third of consumers ranking it as a top-three priority and 82% of consumers making more sustainable purchases.

    Every brand is serving a unique community of stakeholders. Years ago, that community wasn’t as complex as brands were focused on customers and shareholders.

    Now, it’s expected to care about more than just those who drive revenue — brands need to think about their impact on the environment at large and in the local community in which they operate. Consumers want to know that brands are positively contributing to their communities locally and globally.

    Brands that showcase sustainability and a purpose-driven mission have shown to make an impact with customers. There has been a niche of smaller brands, probably with less than $100 million in revenue, who focus on purpose-driven products, whose growth has far outpaced the national average.

    How to Establish the Right Brand Mission

    Finding the right mission or purpose is the most critical part of driving your brand’s values. When brands tout sustainability and social responsibility at large, without any real specifics or relevance to that area, consumers trust these claims less and less.

    It’s not uncommon to see these values and distrust them and feel jaded like it’s just a marketing stunt.

    Choosing your brand’s mission needs to focus on understanding what customers care about and what their values are instead of “here’s what we believe in.”

    Find where your audience’s values and your values and products intersect to find the right mission for you. It can’t be irrelevant to your brand and products, but it also can’t be so broad that it becomes untrustworthy.

    An outdoor apparel brand could choose to protect wildlife areas in the area they work in, and a reusable bottle brand could commit to removing plastics from a local body of water. Selecting a mission within your brand’s reach can create a more genuine, realistic goal.

    Your customers want to get involved too. Enable ways for them to contribute to your goals alongside the brand. Some brands will include a page on their website dedicated to how customers can actively contribute to your brand’s mission.

    Don’t just hold the activist banner; turn your customers into activists. As important as it is that your brand becomes greener, more responsible, and more sustainable, brands should also join hands with their customers to fight the good fight together. This will further create a genuine mission with concrete results.

    Effectively Communicate Your Brand Mission on the Digital Shelf

    It can be pretty straightforward to communicate your brand’s mission on your website and other brand-owned channels. However, getting this message across on every digital platform your products exist on is another challenge.

    Brands will want to communicate their brand story everywhere their products exist. Below-the-fold content can be a great spot to showcase your brand’s values and how your products fit into this narrative.

    Creating enhanced content, such as commercial-quality videos and editorialized imagery, can communicate the brand’s mission effectively anywhere on the digital shelf where your products reside.

    Activating this content to the digital shelf through a syndication solution can cut out laborious processes of getting the content to market. With activation, brands can send quality-checked data to any endpoint in-network instantly.

    Salsify’s Enhanced Content and Activation solutions create a streamlined process for creating mission-driven content for a brand’s owned and non-owned endpoints to create seamless, consistent experiences everywhere on the digital shelf.

    Watch our on-demand webinar, "How to Leverage Brand Creative to Grow Ecommerce," to learn more about driving ecommerce results with brand values.


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