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Is Your Brand Meaningful?
By: Kaitlin T. Gallucci
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According to 50,000 consumers across 14 countries, we “would not care” if 70% of existing brands disappeared. This statistic comes from Havas Media’s global Meaningful Brands analysis, which studies the relationship between brands and consumers’ sense of wellbeing.
Is your brand “meaningful?” Havas Media defines a meaningful brand as one that improves our personal and collective well-being; they contribute to the improvement of our lives and our world in a relevant and sustainable way. As a result, consumers grow more attached to these brands.
Of course, things like “meaning,” “well-being,” and “attachment” are difficult to measure — hence why Havas Media has taken on the development of its Meaningful Brand Index (MBI). However, consumer cynicism complicates things. While a brand may be actively ethical, 64% of consumers believe that most brands only do it to improve their image. It rouses a sense of skepticism rather than one of wellbeing. Only 20% of consumers actually trust brands when they communicate about social or environmental commitments and initiatives, though 85% expect brands to be involved in such causes.
With such distrust among global consumers, how can relevant, responsible brands effectively communicate their meaningful intentions? Is there a difference between being a meaningful brand and being perceived as a meaningful brand?

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About the Author
Kaitlin T. Gallucci is a New York based direct and digital marketing strategist. She tweets here.
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