The world around us is transforming at an incredible pace and impacting businesses and societies across the globe. We look at how the shift to digital underscores a resilience through and more importantly, beyond crisis, inviting brands to reimagine the brand experience. How brands act, behave and show up during this period is critical and will determine success on the other side.
As we continue down the innovation pathways, technology becomes important for brands to stay relevant and engaged with their target audiences. Consumers have a renewed interest in brand purpose — a consciousness that started in response to the health crisis we’re facing today and heightened further by the sense of activism and social movements concurrently sweeping through major world cities. The experience must then aim to answer the question, “how can brands be more purposeful online?”
While uncertainty reigns, brands can stay anchored with the evergreen themes around branding and digitalisation that remain timeless and true, now and beyond into a post-pandemic world:
- Branding is experiential. Experiences start with big, clear ideas that can tell human-centric stories.
- We live in a world where digital and physical experience are integrated. With the convergence of cloud, AI, virtual and mixed reality comes greater experiential opportunities
- Digitalisation is a necessity for every organisation, no longer just a ‘nice-to-have.’ The rise of digital innovation and technology is changing the way audiences consume brand marketing and communication
- Brand purpose can be used to lead transformation. Businesses that ground and center in their purpose, using it as a strategic decision-making tool are often more memorable and successful
- Consumers believe that global brands have the power to make the world better and branding is a means to address that. With brands being held to a higher standard, digitalisation scales the opportunity to associate with goodwill
- Customers now anticipate brands to work meaningfully and seamlessly across multiple channels and platforms. Offline and online experiences need not be identical but should complement each other while remaining true to a brand
At Sedgwick Richardson, we ultimately believe that brands create meaningful connections when ‘purpose’ and experience coexist. New applications of branding and technology, a lot of which are seen in practice today, will define this chapter as a period of transformation. For some businesses, this adaptation spells the difference between survival and demise.
As more digital-first products and services become the norm, players that provide a differentiated post-crisis experience will stay ahead of the curve. The shift to digital may seem daunting but for brands that are nimble and quick to respond to opportunities – the possibilities are endless.