Brand Edge Episode 4 – Purpose is for Posers

Every brand’s purpose should be community relevance, community building and community support by delivering goods and services that help the community flourish.

But the myth making machinery and its “opinion (mis)leaders” have recently anointed the word Purpose with a fresh new coating of importance to encourage brands to get all purposeful – even if their purpose remains boning the world for profit and prominence.

Still, “purpose” can be positive if a brand really is focused on the health and wellness of every member of its brand community. Sadly, too many firms use lofty words like “purpose” to make themselves feel (and to trick their community into believing) they’re doing something worthwhile. Meanwhile, their real purpose is increasing shareholder value, manipulating the stock market and hollowing out going concerns to reap billions. Check out this recent example.

Wayne S. Roberts feels time is running out on the planet’s tolerance for that shortsighted narrative. In Wayne’s view, it’s high time we demanded better promises from better brands. And invest our efforts in those enterprises as stakeholders. That’s a purpose you can get behind, no? Have a listen to Purpose is for Posers and get Wayne’s take on this recycled narrative that needs a reality check.

Listen here: Blade Brand Edge


Wayne S. Roberts

The Globe and Mail calls Wayne S. Roberts "an ad industry provocateur." Maybe its because he's never seen the point of playing by the ad game rules that place awards above results, while offering spec work instead of real value to win accounts. Throughout his career, Wayne has maintained a defiantly independent streak characterized by his insistence that agencies must be honest, direct and passionately invested in their clients' success. His pioneering work in espousing the brand community perspective has been a touchstone of his belief that branding is more than just logos, websites and ad campaigns; it is the fundamental way human beings connect with each other to create communities and launch movements that have changed our world.

Wayne S. Roberts has 66 posts and counting.See all posts by Wayne S. Roberts