Customers are beginning to understand the true impact made when they purchase a product or service. Gone are the days when companies could maintain sales without living up to a promise to do good in their communities.
The onslaught of digital sales and communication means people have more access and insight to who companies really are, and it is changing how they spend. People around the world are choosing to buy from companies that support their communities and team members, especially during a global crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic.
Customers are starting to understand that their purchasing decisions impact more than just their budget. The impact ripples through their community and can set the standard for company behavior moving forward.
People care about who they support. They want to invest their time and money in businesses that choose to give back to their communities, even in small ways.
For manufacturers, this may not be a glamorous fundraising gala, but could instead be machinery donations to local apprenticeship programs, building a jungle gym for a community park, or even something as simple as sponsoring a local scout troop. Each of those, by the way, is a real example of a community initiative led by a real manufacturer—that’s how we know it is feasible.
Brands who authentically demonstrate their community support without a sales agenda will find that customers are more likely to champion their brand.
Many manufacturers already have some sort of giveback program in place. Because of their down-to-earth roots, they don’t often talk about what they do for the community or how they work to benefit the greater good.
However, as modern purchasing behavior continues to evolve, it’s becoming increasingly important to make sure your customers know you share their values.
Manufacturing is facing a labor shortage. As competition for valuable talent continues, demonstrating you care about your community can give you a leg up when attracting modern workers during application decisions. Millennial and Gen Z workers care about investing their time and building their career with a team that supports the local community. Demonstrating how you give back could be the difference between an applicant choosing to work for you or your competitor.
The point is similar with strategic partners and brand ambassadors. People are making strong statements by choosing and promoting one brand over another.
When looking to purchase a product, if you match competitors on quality, sales experience, and customer support, people will then look for your community values and how you live them.
When authentically shared, demonstrating what you do to support your community can help you clinch the sale over a competitor. We are seeing this across the board in manufacturing, as sales departments are now empowered to share the story of their community contributions.
Providing customers with peace of mind that their money is supporting a company that cares about the greater good will increase the likelihood of repeat purchases and advocacy of your brand.
Acuity and Strategy House are teaming up to empower manufacturers to take control of their brand and prepare their company for future growth. In this five-part series, we explore overall brand experience, how to align your brand for your customers, employees, and community, how to set a brand strategy, and where to start on your branding journey.