Why marketing foundation values is important and how to start

Illustration palm.olive

Marketing campaigns that promote a product or service are routine, they are common and straightforward. They aim at the obvious and can be very effective if executed correctly. B2C companies invest in brand support, B2B to the sales handling and direct marketing. This type of marketing is usualy necessary but not the only way to achieve the marketing (sales, HR etc.) goals.

Startups often don’t hold plenty of financial resources and are left with more modest practices than the A-players. Don’t worry. You can not only get away with this “humble” approach but leave an impression that will make your company stand out in different and positive ways.

Let's call it foundation value marketing. It is an exposition of ideas and values that are closer to the “core” of a company and portrait it more as a movement, club or a community. This approach is not all about the product or service. That is defined by its attributes such as quality and convenience. In foundaton value marketing, you expose the basis that led to the product's forming. It could even be the case that what you offer is not the main outcome but rather a by-product of stunning culture and people being put together or a way of life.

What do we stand for?
What do we want to achieve?
How do we achieve it?
How do we interact?
How do we form a community?
Who are we?
What do we believe in?
What do we enjoy?

Try to answer these questions. Are you still sure you know what your business is about?

To perform well at foundation value marketing, you ought to look for the base values and if they don’t exist yet, think what they could be. What are your motivations as a founder or leader? Make it clear what you and your company stand for. Just be honest.

Questions to ask:

1. A company is a group of people (company of people) that work together to achieve a goal or overcome a challenge (that could be personal). People are not human resources, they are human beings. Everybody believes something, and everybody likes to connect in some way. People are interested in talking with other people not so much to brands — take social influencers as an example. Give your business a face, give it the human part, the part that people outside your company and potential employees and partners like. Don’t try to market “empty space”, create values if necessary. This will give you the credibility and trustworthiness. Just remember to stay honest.
2. To create a world-class company, you need world-class people. You need your company to stand for something, not just to stand. Give yourself and your partners something to care for. Outsiders, customers, leads. Everybody wants to appear for something meaningful.
3. A lot of businesses use “stardust” branding to hide their insufficiencies and don’t address them. If you don’t build on rigorous and trustworthy base the result will be as fragile as the foundation. Big companies recently faced negative PR because their leaders swept serious issues such as sexual harassment under the rug.
4. Younger generations are getting more individualistic and at the same time want to be a part of something greater. Give them credit, recognition, and authority (which comes with responsibility).

Marketing foundation values serves to demonstrate (to you and your customers) meaning of that what your company does. It is the reason for other people to join the journey.