Kantar, the world’s leading insights and consulting company has just released the 2021 edition of its annual BrandZ India report. This paradigm-shifting edition unveils 2021’s Most Purposeful Brands in India. According to Kantar BrandZ data, consumers believe that these brands lead with a clear sense of purpose to make their everyday lives better. It also exhibits those that have taken a bolder social stance, as COVID-19 magnified the need for brands to do more than focus on profits alone. The findings tie in with longer-term trends in India and abroad to value brands on ESG criteria (environmental, social, and governance) alongside traditional factors, such as valuations and earnings growth.
Today at the Press Conference when asked when the report has identified Amazon, Asian Paints, and Tata Tea as the most purposeful brands, Deepender Rana, Executive Managing Director- South Asia, Insights Division, Kantar, said, brands need to be more purposeful now, it is a contributor to brand equity is 10 times more important in India, in comparison to globally. This shows that a larger societal purpose is even more critical to success for brands in India. Of course, vague slogans and one-off ‘corporate charity events do not work, and it is not about jumping on the bandwagon of the latest fashionable cause either. Instead, real Purpose flows from and builds on, a brand’s existing core values and DNA. This reinforces the need to understand and measure if a brand’s Purpose is perceived as adding real meaning to consumers’ lives.
On the question of are brands now moving away from being individual to societal in India, SoumyaMohanty, Managing Director- Client and Quantitative, Insights Division, Kantars aid, it is all about fundamental and non-fundamental since we have different segments to differentiate in India. A brand like Tata Tea which has been the No 1 when it comes to trust over the years is trusted not only by the consumers but also by their employees as they look after them and the environment.
For a corporate or for a brand, it is not enough to provide your shareholder value. You also have to look after the community and look after your various stakeholders. Brands have to demonstrate that and various brands are doing it. It was always happening and the only thing is that the pandemic has kind of aggressively aggravated this.
Trust has always been a very important factor, now it has become even more important, but the nuancing of trust has changed. What happened is that earlier trust was about being an expert or about corporate responsibility, etc. Now, trust is of course about integrity, it is also about inclusion, i.e. treating everyone with respect and as an equal; it is about being open and honest and caring for your customer. An important part of that is that being responsible has risen in importance from over a decade ago, which is, environmental responsibility, towards the society and responsibility that also implies that you have to treat everybody fairly and treat your employees well.