‘Brands that bolt-on ‘we believe’ to their message fool no one – they need to live by their principles and rally round a cause

There’s been growing pressure in recent years for brands to tell you what they believe. It’s not enough for them to tell you what they make and what their products do for you; companies now must tell you why they make it, what drives them and what their culture and values are.

The logic is clear: people connect with people. Values are more powerful than products. Individuals driven by belief are attractive and trustworthy, while those who trot something out just because it sells are not. A transparent company saying what it believes feels more authentic than one hidden behind the artifice of its various products and sub-brands. Belief can also define and bolster internal culture, as well as inform external communications.

But articulating a company’s belief is not always easy and marketers must resist the lazy retrofit, by which I mean simply sticking the words “we believe” (or worse, “we passionately believe”) in front of what they are already saying. Is there really much difference between “our hotel gives you a good night’s sleep” and “we passionately believe in the importance of a good night’s sleep”?’

Click here to read the rest of Matt Willifer’s article on the Guardian Media.

Guardian Matt Image

Brands that are vocal, genuine and active – and rally round a cause that’s actually worthy of belief – get the thumbs up. Photograph: Maksim Kabakou / Alamy/Alamy

Matt Willifer

About Matt Willifer

Chief Strategy Officer at WCRS and Partner at Engine.

Follow Matt Willifer