Purpose - the business lighthouse

Navigating Purpose, Profit, and Impact

For businesses, being purposeful is no longer a luxury. Today, customers buy into more than just products and services — they care about what your brand stands for, what drives it, and what its ‘why’ is.

But it’s not just them; companies everywhere are beginning to put their purpose front and center, and take their brand to the next level. In the new world order, impact creation is not just an idea but a roadmap to becoming a brand of the future.

That’s why, drawing from our rich experience of helping 170+ conscious brands across the globe, we’ve created the award-winning Purpose Playbook™ — a personal, hands-on guide to navigating your brand’s purpose and creating meaningful impact. In the Playbook, we unpack 8 transformative steps with real-life case studies and actions points to help guide you as you amplify your impact journey and build a loyal community of customers and stakeholders. But for now, here’s a little taste.

Play #1: Craft Your Unique Impact Philosophy

There’s a tendency for brands today to engage in impact initiatives that seem entirely disconnected from each other and their core purpose. This often attracts backlash from consumers who perceive such an effort as a mere marketing gimmick. Being a successful and purposeful brand in the 21st century demands that your impact commitments and activities are uniquely aligned to your business and ethos.

When you are passionate about the philosophy with which you approach business, life at work, and impact, you become an impact-driven brand. You can use Revolt London’s 7-Step Process for Purpose as a guiding framework to conceptualize your unique impact philosophy and theory of change.

Play #2: Know Your People Impact and Planet Footprint

Being aware of the impact your business has on the world is key to creating meaningful change and becoming a purpose-driven brand. Be it your business’s plastic footprint, water usage, diversity, and inclusion, or alignment with SDG goals — it’s important that you hold yourself accountable for all areas of the environment and human life that your company impacts.

Pick a people and planet positive framework that resonates with your brand, stick with it, and customize on top of it. Remember to regularly audit and benchmark your impact using the frameworks over time. After all, you can’t deliver on your impact commitments if you can’t consistently measure them.

Play #3: Choose Progress Over Perfection

The quest for perfection can obstruct meaningful action. A brand’s ambition to make a tangible impact is discouraged because of the inherent fear that its initiatives are not “perfect” and will be criticized by consumers and onlookers. This calls on us to introduce empathy into our impact mission, and bring our focus and energy to time-sensitive issues that demand immediate action.

Introspect on the challenges that might have hindered your impact progress so far, and when you have a sense of what they might be, book a free consultation with an expert vendor or solutions provider in that space. They will always be more than happy to help troubleshoot and nail down tangible next steps.

Play #4: Achieve Impact Alpha Through Your Actions

In the world of finance, positive alpha means that investment has beaten the market and achieved returns above and beyond the expected. This methodology is equally important in the realm of impact and purpose, where creating “additionality” means that your efforts and investments need to surpass the status quo. In other words, brands should aim to maximize the impact created on every dollar spent.

Additionality is a technically challenging topic, so consult with seasoned domain experts and work with them to craft roadmaps and optimize allocations. At the end of the day, creating impact loses meaning if you fail to improve the status quo — so focus your attention on maximizing impact where it counts.

Play #5: Design Your Purpose Action Roadmap

When you’re inspired to take action, you need an impact creation roadmap that spans short, medium, and long-term goals to ensure that your effort is timely and holistic. The absence of a plan of action can result in delayed or ineffective impact execution, thus negating your ‘do good’ commitments.

Start at the end; in other words, to effectively kickstart your planning efforts, first establish what your brand’s end goals might be with regards to impact creation, and then work backward to see what you need to do to accomplish those objectives year-on-year.

Play #6: Practice Vulnerability and Radical Transparency

For the longest time, brands have tried to portray a perfect image of themselves, cherry-picking stories and narratives that they think consumers want to hear about. The reality is the polar opposite — customers today want to know the behind-the-scenes and be included in the raw conversation. The solution to overcome this growing disconnect is to practice radical transparency. Here’s how.

Revisit the most recent piece of your brand’s communications about impact, and evaluate how you could have done things differently if radical transparency had been embedded into the creative approach. You don’t have to reveal every aspect of your business without filters, but you should be true to your customers about the progress you’re making in your mission.

Play #7: Pave a Two-Way Street to Spread Your Purpose

Brands that only engage in one-way communication about their impact initiatives are hampering their purpose investments. Pave a two-way street and talk “with” your customers, instead of talking “at” them. As you enable stakeholders to candidly engage with you through public and private channels about your impact, you’ll start to unlock the full potential of customer loyalty and brand preference.

Pick a message, an action, and a channel — these are the building blocks you need to pave a two-way street with your customers. Listen to them and address their concerns to understand their hopes and aspirations better. Having customer insight can ensure that your impact resonates with everyone.

Play 8: Bake Advocacy and Activism into Your DNA

It’s not enough to support activism. Today, brands need to become activists and incorporate advocacy into their day-to-day work. Leveraging purpose-driven content and campaigns, brands have the power to initiate an impact domino effect within their circle of influence and stand out as a unique thought leader among retailers, competitors, and customers.

Revolt’s 7-steps to build movements is a guide to integrating activism into your purpose investments. Begin by identifying how your brand can become renowned for the initiatives it is leading. Follow that up with 7 actions — pick a cause, take action, sound a rallying cry, create a relatable symbol, launch innovative mind-bombs, mobilize communication touchpoints, and leverage your allies.

While the journey of pursuing purpose and creating impact may not always be easy, it’s a truly worthy conquest. The intention to create change is key. And sometimes, you may not know how to, and that’s okay. Feel free to have a conversation with experts and ask for help. You’ll only be bolstering your impact! If you feel stuck or you’re looking for direction, don’t you worry because we’ve barely scratched the surface here.

The Purpose Playbook explores all 8 plays in great depth. Click here to download it for free and you can always come back to the Purpose Playbook for a renewed sense of inspiration.

Remember, what we do now matters for our collective tomorrow. Your actions can positively alter the course of our future. So, keep at it. We’ll be cheering for you.

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