Connecting vision, purpose and trust to drive brand leadership

Jen Robinson

Last week, Bloomberg Media CMO Anne Kawalerski and Bloomberg Media Global Head of Data Science and Insights Michelle Lynn explored why purpose matters to audiences from Gen Z to C-suite executives at the 2021 ANA B2B Marketing Conference. With a particular focus on how customer expectations are increasingly creating purpose-driven change, the session focused on how vision, purpose and trust come together to build strong, relevant brands.

Their analysis was fueled by the Customer Centricity Index, a platform to advance actionable thought leadership that was developed by Bloomberg Media and Salesforce, a leader in powering customer-centricity for its clients. Leveraging the Bloomberg Brand Health System – a proprietary, independent survey and construct designed by Bloomberg Media that has measured perceptions of 700+ brands from 15,000+ business influencers to date – the Customer Centricity Index helps companies uncover what it truly means to be customer-centric.

Highlights from the session include:

Business has an increasingly visible role to play in shaping society. Leading the way in setting an agenda that responds to key human needs and demands is no longer a bonus for the business world,” said Kawalerski, citing a survey that showed 83% of American executives feel an urgency for businesses to find solutions to today’s pressing problems, from racial equality and climate change to sexual harassment and internet security. That creates a real mandate around having an authentic purpose, she added – and Bloomberg’s reporting shows that there’s a sustained and growing momentum into 2021.

Brands need to have trusted relationships with customers to stand out as leaders. The Bloomberg Brand Health System looks at five components that influence how executives view purpose for the companies they do business with: Social Responsibility, Sustainability, Transparency, Ethics and Honesty With the Public. “But having vision and purpose is only part of the story,” Kawalerski said. “Relationships matter – and this is more true than ever during times of great disruption.” 

The Bloomberg Brand Health System gives us the ability to evaluate the factors that underpin brand performance and potential using an unbiased source. “Bloomberg Media has a focus on building tools that help brands understand audiences with rigorous, fact-based analysis,” said Lynn. “Together with Salesforce, we used the Bloomberg Brand Health System to build a Customer Centricity Index that illuminates what C-level executives feel is most important in driving customer relationships.” The strength of the study is its sample, she added, which captures the perceptions of individuals who are not only making decisions but are also influencing the opinions of others. That allows Bloomberg Media strategists to look at how core constructs like Vision and Trust interact with factors we identify from clear patterns we observe within the data, like Purpose and Customer Centricity.

The Customer Centricity Index embeds new, tangible meaning in what it actually takes to be customer-centric. “We are able to hone in on the critical role that trusted relationships play in driving brand leadership with a first-of-its-kind methodology,” said Kawalerski. “That gives brands and marketers a new framework to assess their own customer-centricity performance and stand out among peers.” The Index ranks the top 100 leaders in customer-centricity across the 5 sectors Financial Services, Retail, Communications, Health and Manufacturing – enabling a deeper understanding around how different industries and brands are delivering on customer-centricity successfully.

Read more:
Bloomberg Media and Salesforce Partner to Create the Customer Centricity Index