June 28th, 2013 - Posted by Human

Creating Meaningful Lives

THIS POST IS AN EXTRACT FROM AN ARTICLE THAT APPEARED IN FAST COMPANY

Unless you’re making a conscious decision to live off the grid, the vast majority of your day involves interacting with brands and their products. Every decision you–and consumers everywhere from the developed world to the developing world–make in terms of what you buy, what you wear, what you eat, and countless other decisions, is a vote for or against a panoply of multinational companies all vying for your money and attention. A new global survey has identified a key weapon for brands in that battle: Make consumers’ lives better.

It seems obvious, that people would spend their money on things that improve their lives, but it isn’t always the case. “The real story of the global economy is this: institutions aren’t delivering the level of well-being that people want, need, and expect,” says Umair Haque, the director of the Havas Media Labs and Harvard Business Review blogger who writes frequently on how business can create real value. “The next global economy isn’t just about stuff, it’s about human lives.”

“People want lives that count, resonate, and matter in human terms–and it’s the failure to live that way that leads them to mistrust institutions, instead of respect, adore, and maybe even love them.” Plenty of companies provide useless, throwaway goods. Others corporate identities are so tainted that you can’t feel good tying your name and dollars to them. But an increasing group of companies is striving–intentionally or not–to focus on improving lives. It’s these companies that rose to the top of Havas Media’s second annual Meaningful Brands Index, which was released today and features Google in first place, followed by Samsung, Microsoft, Nestle, and Sony. And it’s working: An index of Havas’s Meaningful Brands would have outperformed the stock market by 120% last year.

READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE HERE

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