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You don’t have a marketing resources problem. You have a brand purpose problem.

We all envy those darling brands that everyone fawns over.

“People carry their logo around!”

“Everyone posts about them — it’s like free advertising!”

Too often, we think it’s a marketing resource problem.

“If we had what Starbucks has we could kill it!”

Sure, Starbucks has resources. But the thing that makes us envious is something much more valuable.

A Starbucks cup is like an accessory. People like to be seen with it. McDonalds makes a cup of coffee and puts it in a decently designed cup. They’re bigger than Starbucks. How come nobody is especially proud to have their cup of joe? You don’t need to answer that. We all know.

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Starbucks stands for something. Their brand purpose comes across in their mission statement:

To inspire and nurture the human spirit — one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.

Everything that flows out of that brand purpose leads to economic benefit for the organization. From free press to the permission to ask a premium price. And they get it without having to assault us with inane TV commercials that torture us with an explanation of forgettable features.

When you have a brand with purpose, you get rewarded in extraordinary ways. Team members are more engaged and productive. You’re able to recruit top prospects. Customers are more loyal and more likely to expand their relationship with you. And prospects are easier to attract and quicker to convert.

That’s not something you can trigger with a bigger marketing spend. Those are privileges that only purpose can bring to your organization.

Dan is an expert brand strategist and author of the forthcoming book Big Audacious Meaning — Unleashing Your Purpose-Driven Story. He is a founder at Will & Grail — a brand innovation company, helping organizations find their unique, undeniable and unshakable sense of purpose and create innovative experiences that bring it to life. He regularly shares his insight here, on Linkedin, and at dansalva.com.

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Dan is an expert brand strategist and author of the book Big Audacious Meaning — Unleashing Your Purpose-Driven Story. He is a founder at Will & Grail.

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