Sign Of The Cultural Times; Are Brands Overlooking Cultural Relevance?

In an ever-evolving market, brands need to be plugged to their audience to remain relevant. And the responsibility lies with its marketers – the storytellers – to connect to the right audience, the right way.

When Dove launched a limited-edition range of ‘body-shape’ bottles last year to inspire ‘real beauty’ it was slammed by the public for being patronising. Rather than empowering women of all “ages, shapes, sizes and ethnicities” as intended, it simply served to show how out of touch it was, failing to be anything but real.

Dove is just one of several brands that has been called out by consumers in recent years, for getting the tone wrong.

It begs the question, in this storytelling age where building and maintaining relationships with customers is key, can brands really afford to overlook the importance of ‘cultural relevance’?

Cultural relevance is about understanding and responding to the culture of your audience in a relatable way that is authentic to your brand.

In an ever-evolving market, brands need to be plugged to their audience to remain relevant. And the responsibility lies with its marketers – the storytellers – to connect to the right audience, the right way.

This involves understanding your audience as much as your brand. What are their values, their views, their nuisances and idiosyncrasies?

It’s about relationship building. Using the right tone of voice in adverts and on social media, and allowing the brand personality to come out.

At CLICKON, it’s about responding quickly to trends and being ahead of the game.

But most of all, it’s about authenticity.

In an age where the consumer has so much choice, the need for brands to demonstrate cultural relevance is more important than ever. In the recent partnership with Y&R Memphis for the America’s Navy campaign ‘Faces of the Fleet, CLICKON demonstrated a deep understanding of the importance of creating an emotional connection. By bringing to life the people behind the ships, jets and technology involved in the Navy, they helped humanise the brand. Telling their stories proved a powerful way of connecting with its audience on a personal level.

Richard Wilson, CEO commented, “Successful brands understand the importance of nurturing meaningful relationships with their customers. They know that in order to be heard in a busy marketplace they have to work hard to actively listen, respond and evolve, without losing what they stand for.”

He added, “With 64% of customers willing to switch brands due to a lack of relevance, there is an important lesson for marketers. That cultural relevance will always trump brand legacy”

 

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