A round-up of the most important insights and what they mean for your business.
The value in ‘purpose’
Welcome to this week’s Business Briefing! Each week we wade through the COVID-19 noise to unearth the most valuable insights for your business. This week we’re looking at all things purpose.
COVID’s impact on purpose-driven business operations has been seismic. ‘Purpose’ has been adopted at an eye-watering speed, and with good reason. According to Kantar research, brands with a recognised commitment to purpose in 2020 have grown more than twice the rate over others over a 12-year period. But, here’s the thing, not every brand gets it; purpose is often misunderstood, non-strategic and abused. This week’s edition features brands, ideas and innovations built on purpose.
Luxury platform, Olivela, launches digital portal with exclusive VR experiences, and donates 20% of sales to communities struggling with COVID (Springwise).
Despite COVID, the used clothing market continues its growth; from $28 billion (£22 billion) in 2019, it is expected to reach $64 billion (£50 billion) by 2024 (Retail Dive).
Zalando will start to assess sellers on their sustainability credentials, in a move that both raises the bar and accelerates sustainability in the fashion industry (Charged).
Why does this matter? Conscious consumerism is gaining momentum, and attitudes have begun to change post COVID. The considered customer wants to support small businesses and be more human, as highlighted in Bulbshare’s recent research. The main consumer groups spearheading the change are Gen Y and Z, who, by 2025, will represent 55 per cent of all sales. Unsurprising then that corporations are evolving to play an ethical role whilst retaining sales.
Hotels are looking to develop purpose to help build trust as consumers begin the gradual process of gaining full confidence in travel (Boutique Hotelier).
The employee experience is just as important as the guest experience - hotel brands are told to treat their staff the same way they treat their guests (Skift).
The events industry is coming under scrutiny for its sustainability credentials, forcing the industry to seek innovation and alignment (EventMB).
Why does this matter? Hospitality, travel and tourism has been decimated by COVID. But the industry’s growth pre pandemic became unhealthy and unsustainable. There is now a renewed focus on human connection to create better experiences and a healthier industry. The Global Wellness Institute have released a series of whitepapers, one specifically for the travel sector (Travel and Wonder) which explores how reconnection can help humankind’s purpose for travel.
CaixaBank, Spain’s leading retail bank have implemented a sustainability strategy within their digital services and lifestyle platform, Imagin (Finextra).
Tackling the industry’s diversity problem - free training platform for aspiring VCs launches with the aim of getting internships a more meritocratic process (Spingwise).
73% of finance employees who say they work at a purpose-driven company feel more engaged, compared with just 23% of those who do not (Heidrick).
Why does this matter? The pursuit of meaning, to help financial services and fintechs to develop a purpose, is not necessarily a new thing. The industry has been changing its perspective and mindset ever since the global recession of 2008. But such a change in culture and attitude must be underpinned purpose - providing services that meet the economic needs of society, to empower individuals and give them security should be placed above short-term profits and bonuses. It's a few years old, but this whitepaper on culture and purpose in financial services provides richer insight.
Akili Interactive launch EndeavorRX – a video game prescribed to children with ADHD; and it could potentially be combined with other treatments (Springwise).
A diverse collection of experienced gaming industry vets and gamers launch purpose-driven esports gaming organisation called XSET (Ginx).
The gaming industry is reckoning with its historically problematic cultural expectations, gradually becoming more open to new backgrounds, viewpoints and perspectives (Etch).
Why does this matter? The gaming industry really is at the forefront of accelerated growth and change post-COVID. In the UK alone, it is helping to drive economic inflation, according to Games Industry. And with no signs of slowing down, games makers, publishers, and players are keen to ensure its purpose remains relevant and meaningful, being a force for change, focusing on cultural diversity, equality, creative expression, and inclusion.
This week we’re showcasing the great work of Footlocker, created by AnalogFolk. Last week they launched a new brand platform called ‘Shoes Don’t’ Change the World. You Do.’ The campaign serves to build on the organisation’s pledge of donating $200m to the black community through economic development and education.
Each week, we pick a feel-good story that showcases human resilience and brilliance during a time of great change and innovation. So, what have we loved this week?
Play is a fundamental consideration as part of any pre-school’s purpose. So, when building a brand-new preschool in Kumamoto City in southern Japan, the school ensured the courtyard was designed to collect rainwater into a huge puddle, allowing the children to not miss out on the wonderous pastime of puddle splashing. Purpose-driven design. We love it. And we love this illustration from Emily Coxhead’sThe Happy Newspaper.