Commentary by Barry Silverstein
There is little question that there is a dramatic shift going on in brand marketing. As reported in a new study by Edelman, the world's largest PR firm, a big part of that change is sharing -- on the surface, a simple act, but a challenge to execute for many brands. Edelman surveyed 11,000 people in 8 countries about over 200 brands. They learned that 90 percent of people want brands to share -- but only 10 percent of people think brands do it well.
Here are three glaring examples of the disparity between what people want from brands and the lack of success brands have in giving it to them, according to the survey:
1. 54 percent of people say it is important that brands openly offer information on how the brand performs against competitors, but only 17 percent believe brands do this well
2. 54 percent of people say it is important that brands communicate openly and transparently about how products are sourced and made, but only 12 percent believe brands do this well
3. 51 percent of people say it is important that brands ask about their needs, but only 10 percent believe brands do this well.
Perhaps most important, Edelman found that there is a strong correlation between brands that share and "actions that drive business value." In other words, people are much more likely to try a brand, brand a product, and recommend a brand if that brand is good at sharing.
Edelman identifies six key areas in which brands can share: Shared Dialog, Shared Experience, Shared Goals, Shared Values, Shared Product, and Shared History. Check out Edelman's presentation for specific information about each area, including case studies.
Even if you market a small brand, using sharing can significantly set you apart from your competition. Something to keep in mind as you look at your brand marketing strategy for next year.
Barry Silverstein is a brand marketing expert. He has written numerous 123 eGuides on branding, product launches, and sales leads, available here. He also teaches an on-demand online course, Big Brand Strategies for Small Brands. Find out more about it at www.bigbrandstrategiesforsmallbrands.com.