Introduction to purpose-driven marketing

In today's marketplace, a brand's value is increasingly measured by its societal and environmental contributions. This guide is built to help you understand purpose-driven marketing—a strategy that aligns your brand with meaningful causes to resonate with today's conscientious consumers.

Discover the essential role of societal causes in influencing consumer decisions and learn how to evaluate your brand’s role within this socially conscious society. Start your path to a purposeful brand identity with a deep dive into the principles and benefits of purpose-driven marketing.


The Purpose Spectrum
Purpose is a spectrum, and a brand’s place and fluidity on that spectrum depend on many factors. Let’s take a look at five points along this spectrum to help marketers assess where their brands fall and what that means for how they move forward in a purpose-obsessed marketing landscape.
The social causes that most influence US consumer purchase decisions
Most marketers have started to discover how consumers’ personal values, political stances, and social beliefs can impact their brand loyalties. But which social issues have the greatest impact on actual purchase decisions?

Developing a purpose-driven strategy

Creating a purpose-driven strategy requires a deep understanding of your brand’s core values and the societal issues it aims to address. This section guides you through identifying your brand's unique purpose and aligning it with consumer values, especially in times of turmoil.

Learn how to articulate your micro-level brand purpose and strategize to make your brand resonate on a deeper level with your audience, building a strong, purpose-aligned brand narrative that drives meaningful engagement.


Your micro-level brand purpose
Gastón Tourn, CMO of Appear Here, joined us again to talk about keeping your messaging and storytelling focused on human beings and how your brand impacts them. He calls this your “micro-level brand purpose” and you can read all about what we discussed below.
How brands can align with consumer values in times of turmoil
Today, more than ever before, consumers are shopping with their hearts and their wallets. They support brands whose values align with their own.

Executing purpose-driven campaigns

Actionable insights into bringing your brand's purpose to life through impactful marketing campaigns are what this section offers. Explore case studies and expert discussions on joining movements that matter, with practical advice on crafting campaigns that not only speak to your audience but also contribute positively to society.

Enhance your brand's impact through purpose-driven campaigns that embody your brand’s values and mission, driving both societal change and business growth.


CMOs: Sustainability champions?
Sustainability is one of the biggest challenges that the world, society, and our industry faces. What responsibility do marketing leaders have?
Joining the movements that matter through marketing
Elliott Rayner, CMO of ARION, covers everything from why movement marketing can be so effective, to different examples and approaches so you can develop your own strategies.


CMO Convo | The movements that matter | Elliott Rayner
Movement marketing, it’s not just a clever pun because we’re joined by Elliott Rayner, CMO of sports tech brand ARION. It’s the idea of tying your brand to societal, scientific, or political movements.

Challenges and solutions

Navigate the complexities of purpose-driven marketing with a clear understanding of potential challenges and strategic solutions. From the risks of purposewashing to aligning your brand with its true purpose, this part of the guide addresses common obstacles and provides actionable advice for maintaining authenticity in your purpose-driven marketing initiatives.

Benefit from expert insights and real-world examples to ensure your brand's purpose remains genuine and impactful.


The problem with purposewashing for CMOs and brands
Struggling to ensure the values you claim to support match what your organization actually does? Greg Ricciardi joined us to discuss why disingenuous brand purposes are harmful to brands, their customers, and society as a whole.


CMO Convo | The problem with purposewashing | Greg Ricciardi
A brand’s purpose and values have become increasingly important to both consumers and B2B customers. But this importance has led to many brands attaching themselves inauthentically just for the purposes of good press.

Leadership in purpose-driven marketing

Dive into the pivotal role of empathetic leadership in championing purpose-driven marketing initiatives. CMOs and marketing leaders have an important role in driving societal change and developing the power of empathetic leadership for a brand.

Discover through expert discussions how to inspire your team and stakeholders, leveraging your leadership position to effect meaningful change both within and beyond your organization.


The power of empathetic leadership for a brand
In this article, I’ll guide you on the journey of integrating empathy into your marketing practices.
Driving societal change as a CMO
We’ve seen an increase in marketing leaders looking to leverage their influence to drive positive societal change.


CMO Convo | How to drive societal change as a CMO | Katie Klumper
Seen the news lately? In case you missed it, there’s a lot going on, and a lot of causes that need support. But what role can CMOs and their brands have in driving change and benefiting society? According to our guest, Katie Klumper, plenty!
Encoding empathy into your brand’s DNA with Miri Rodriguez
Miri Rodriguez, Senior Storyteller at Microsoft and best-selling author of Brand Storytelling, knows all about the power of empathy for brands. She joined us on CMO Convo to share how you can ensure empathy is encoded in your brand’s DNA, and how to leverage that empathy into effective storytelling.

Diversity and inclusion in marketing

A brand purpose that needs to be reinforced is the necessity of incorporating diversity and inclusion into every aspect of your marketing strategy. Understand the importance of diverse leadership, the benefits of amplifying diverse voices, and the impact of inclusive practices on your brand’s relevance and resonance.

Gain insights into building diverse teams and creating content that reflects the multifaceted world we live in, ensuring your marketing efforts connect genuinely with a global audience.


We need to adopt an inclusive approach to sustainability
We are experiencing an undeniable environmental crisis, and it is easy to get overwhelmed by the magnitude of the situation. But there are glimmers of hope as individuals and businesses alike are embarking on intentional paths of change.
Diverse marketing takes diverse leadership
In CMO Convo’s 100th episode, I sat down with two exceptional women from the marketing world. In this article, I’ll be delving deep into the nuances of diversity and leadership in marketing.
Further together - building a diverse marketing team
Maya Grossman, VP of Marketing at Canvas discusses building an effective marketing team with diversity in mind, the value diversity brings to organizations, and more.
Why we need to amplify diverse voices in marketing
It’s important to talk about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) from a marketing perspective and make sure that we’re building the kinds of organizations that represent us as people and our businesses well.


CMO Convo | It’s a diverse world. Marketing should be too.
Across almost any industry, the audiences you’re marketing to are likely becoming more and more diverse. Does your marketing team reflect that?
CMO Convo’s 100th episode | Diverse marketing needs diverse leadership
We’re celebrating hitting 100 episodes on CMO Convo with a special episode! The topic: overcoming obstacles as a woman marketer, and the importance of elevating and championing diverse voices.
CMO Convo | Building a diverse marketing team
Diversity: a quota that needs to be filled, or an essential part of creating a great marketing team? Our guest this episode sits firmly in the latter camp: Maya Grossman, VP of Marketing for Canvas, the no.1 diversity recruiting platform.

Next steps

Remember that the transition to purpose-driven marketing is a transformative process for your brand—a commitment to making a positive impact on society while achieving business success. Reflect on the insights, strategies, and examples shared throughout this guide and consider how you can apply them to elevate your brand’s purpose. Take proactive steps towards integrating purpose into your marketing efforts, and lead the way in building a more responsible, inclusive, and impactful brand.

Do you want your brand to have a purpose that resonates with your audience? Discuss your ideas with a global network of marketing leaders on the CMO Alliance Community Slack channel.

Join them for free.