At Fire&Spark, we are firm believers in the power of mission-driven marketing. A mission gives a brand a compelling topic to create engaging and shareable content around. It also helps brands partner with like-minded influencers and get backlinks from like-minded organizations. A mission gives an emerging brand a clear path to building organic visibility.
Some marketers may think, “That all sounds great, but my brand isn’t based on saving the world–does this apply to me?”
The thing is, any brand can leverage a mission to boost visibility and sales. A mission doesn’t have to be a social mission to be powerful. And it’s never too late to find it.
A Brand Mission Need Not Be a Social Mission
A brand mission is a purpose that is deeply held by the brand’s leadership. The purpose may be a social mission like donating to charity, but it can be whatever motivates the brand to do what it does, from the founder’s compelling backstory to the craftsmanship behind their products.
For example, leather goods brand Corter Leather tells the story of a commitment to hand-crafted quality that has carried them all the way from their college dorm-room beginnings. They publish a lot of content around this mission, including in-depth details about their stitching process. Corter Leather’s organic traffic has more than tripled in the last two years, according to data from SEMRush.
How Do I Choose an Authentic Mission?
Just because your brand hasn’t embraced a mission from the start doesn’t mean it can’t begin doing so.
When Stephanie Morimoto took over as CEO of wellness brand Asutra two years ago, she described the brand as more “a collection of products” than a brand with a clear identity.
Stephanie’s first strategic initiative as CEO was to completely revamp Asutra’s branding, around the central mission of promoting active self-care. Asutra has invested heavily in creating content that tells a cohesive story about how Asutra can help customers with various facets of their wellness, offering educational tips along the way on everything from yoga to getting good sleep.
This new branding has successfully secured influencer endorsements–including a big one from tennis superstar Venus Williams–and boosted ecommerce results. In the past two years Asutra’s organic traffic has grown over 1300%, according to SEMrush data.
Authenticity is Everything
Melissa Clayton, CEO of the mission-driven jewelry brand Tiny Tags, said on this October’s Fire&Spark Fireside Chat that having a strong and authentic mission will attract influences willing to work with your brand free of charge, and partners who will go above and beyond for you. Her own mission-driven marketing experience has proven this. None other than actress Meryl Streep wore a Tiny Tags necklace at photo shoots for the New York Times and the Washington Post–not because she had an endorsement deal or her stylist told her to, but because as a mother of four, she connected with Tiny Tags’ brand purpose.
But your mission won’t inspire anyone to act on your behalf if it’s insincere. Indeed, if your mission is not authentic, customers and partners will see right through it. And the perception that a brand is disingenuously supporting a cause can be damaging, for an example look no further than Pepsi’s disastrous commentary on the fight against racial injustice (in an ad featuring Kendall Jenner).
Mission-driven brands can out-perform their competition because they more easily generate the engagement signals Google rewards with top rankings — i.e. backlinks, reviews, content partnerships, and engagement.
A brand mission can come from many places, but as long as it’s authentic, it will open for your brand a powerful channel to gaining organic traffic.
Interested in developing a Mission-Driven SEO campaign? Drop us a line to get started.