Posts Tagged ‘Fuzin Communications’

Brand reputation and consumer’s expectations.

October 11, 2021

It is quite clear that the pandemic hit industries and brands in diverse ways. Many organizations saw their budgets being cut down to half or nothing, conferences saw a move to digital stages and social justice movements such as BLM were in the spotlight more than ever before. This pivotal moment in history had led to a shift in the way brands interact with consumers.

A new study from FleishmanHillard examines the gap between consumers’ expectations and brands’ actions: 64% of consumers believe that a company is more authentic when they communicate about their behavior and their impact on society and the environment, instead of the benefits they offer to their customers.

The study also shows how 47% of consumer perceptions about a brand are driven by customer benefits, while 53% of consumers’ perceptions are shaped by social outcomes such as better environmental practices within the organization or the way a company cares about its employees, and management behaviors like acting ethically and responsibly.

An example of a troubled relationship between brands and consumers is the case of Wetherspoons, the company that owns pubs and hotels across the UK and Ireland. In this case, the Government ordered the closure of pubs in March 2020, and owner Tim Martin refused to pay employees until the Government reimbursed the company for the losses. Furthermore, he encouraged employees to find employment elsewhere, such as in Tesco supermarkets. This is a clear example of how a company is showing in their communications their lack of care towards the impact they have on employees, and on society.

On the other hand, a brand that keeps demonstrating how to marry consumer expectations with the brand’s activities is Nike. Days after the release of the horrific footage of George Floyd’s death in May 2020, the company launched an ad with a variation of their famous tagline. It went from “Just Do It” to “For Once, Don’t Do It.” This simple change in their communications delivered a positive sentiment across their customers regardless of income, age, and ethnicity.

These two examples represent the two sides of how companies can impact society.

Brands are now expected to be proactive to be part of the solution, not only part of the conversation – Issues such as racial inequality or climate justice will need to be at the forefront of any company’s communications strategy.

According to IBM’s research, 71% of consumers will consider transparency one of the most important brand attributes.

Knowing this what are you doing in your business to communicate better?

Patricia

Patricia Perera is a Communications intern with Fuzion Communications 


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