Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Brand Authenticity: Keeping it Real

You hear a lot of talk these days of brands needing to "keep it real", and that when a brand does fail, it is mostly due to their lack of authenticity. Well what exactly is Brand Authenticity, and why does it matter?

Brand Authenticity refers to how a consumer perceives a brand: Is the brand following through on its promises? Is the brand being true to itself and its consumers? Is the brand empathetic, responsible and trustworthy? Does the brand provide support to its consumers in being true to themselves?

In order to achieve true Brand Authenticity, the brand would need to be molded around the consumer's wants, needs, desires, and problems. This would involve an emotional connection with the consumer that is forged over time through continuity, credibility, integrity, and meaning.

Does the brand have a history with the consumer? Has it survived through time and trends? Does the brand look toward the future and remain engaged with its consumers?

Does the brand deliver on its promises? Has the brand remained true to its consumers? Is the brand honest and trustworthy?

Does the brand operate on a set of core values that is taken seriously? Does it truly care about its consumers by giving back?

Does the brand reflect the values that are important to its consumers? Does the brand bring value and meaning to its consumers' lives?

Brand Authenticity requires the brand to be emotional and empathetic with its consumers. Not only talk the talk, but also walk the walk and stay engaged by encouraging consumer interaction through social media, personal stories and videos. Building the emotional connection with the consumer is key to authenticity.

This year, 3 brands have stood out when it came to building brand authenticity through emotional marketing. Amazon Prime delivered a great promotion this year focusing on the emotional connection to boost their brand authenticity. 

Zillow displayed extreme empathy by showcasing their actual customers in their promotions, which created high value, meaning and connection for their customers. 

And Publix enforces their brand authenticity and connection through continuity and meaning.

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