Welcome back to Brand Trends To Look Out For in 2022. If you missed our first blog of the series, please click here. It’s not something you want to miss out on. This week, we will look at ethical branding and its growing importance in our ever-changing world and how you can integrate it into your business.
As the world we live in changes and the discourse surrounding race, sexuality and gender become more nuanced and important, reflecting these changes in branding has become essential.
The stats don’t lie – 71% of people expect brands to promote diversity and inclusion in their online marketing, and brands with the highest diversity scores enjoyed a consumer preference rating of 83%. Embracing and celebrating diversity is, quite simply, what consumers now expect – making inclusivity the future and the present.
There are various ways you can incorporate inclusivity into your branding, with website blogs, social media posts and embracing diversity within your team being a selection of many examples.
However, it is vital to remember that this isn’t about simple box-ticking – consumers can generally catch wind of inclusive branding that isn’t genuine. Using blogs as an example, it could be useful to create blogs for various landmarks throughout the year, such as LGBTQ History Month, and how it relates to your industry.
To summarise, inclusive branding is here to stay – and is simple to launch and maintain, as long as you are genuinely committed to doing so. One website stock photo wouldn’t be enough!
(4) Brand activism
Similarly to inclusivity, brand activism continues with the theme of ethical branding, and consumers want to buy from businesses that have a conscience. Brand activism concerns social justice issues, such as embracing environmental sustainability and charity.
It has become vital for organisations to promote sustainability in recent years, with 65% of us believing that businesses should shoulder as much responsibility as governments for social change. As populations look to take collective responsibility for the environment, they expect brands to do the same – and this is a great way to identify with the consumer.
Brand activism encourages brand loyalty and can ensure a dedicated customer base. The world is changing, and people seek products and services that they care about and genuinely support: these companies are growing three times faster than their competitors. Making the world a better place is always a bonus!
Suppose you’re stuck for ideas on how to get involved in brand activism. In that case, there are many online projects concerning the environment, such as MoreTrees – who we engaged in our Plant Pledge – to plant one tree for every client for every month they remain with us.
Brand activism doesn’t only serve the environment; the area of brand activism you engage with depends on your audience and product. Recently, the celebration and appreciation for all things local has grown for consumers. Therefore, promoting local events online and showcasing any local products you sell or use is always effective.
Partnering with and promoting local and national non-profit organisations, perhaps with a cause related to your business, is also a great way to enhance your brand. There are many ways to grow your ‘company conscience’, so you should know your audience and where to focus.
Above all, as with inclusivity, consumers know how to look out for a PR stunt – so ensure you are consistent and thorough!
So, there you have it, inclusivity and brand activism. It shouldn’t only be reserved for the big brands – businesses of all sizes, from one-person bands to start-ups to SMEs, should consider how to get their business on the right side of the line. Ideal for business, ideal for the planet, and ideal for those around you. Who loses?
Please stay tuned over on our Instagram for the release of part three next week. Alternatively, book a discovery call if you want a helping hand in navigating these brand trends in more detail, and Beyond Co.’s brand experts will be on hand.