Best of Brand Marketing Distilled – 11/11/11 – Random Acts of Kindness

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Best of Brand Marketing Distilled is our weekly distillation of the best of brand marketing and business intelligence. We hope the ideas and articles are fuel for your organization’s planning and success.  This Remembrance Day our edition focuses on Random Acts of Kindness.

On a personal level, this Remembrance Day feels auspicious and numerologically significant with its triple elevens – 11/11/11.  To mark it, engaging in Random Acts of Kindness seems fitting.  However, brand teams may want to take it to the next level and build Random Acts of Kindness into their brand experience — not as a hollow marketing device — but using Random Acts of Kindness as an authentic expression of the humans that make up the underlying business.  If your team is kind and compassionate, consider whether now is the time to infuse the ethos of Random Acts of Kindness into your brand experience.  Genuine Random Acts of Kindness allow a brand to connect with customers and inspire the brand’s team.  However, to be genuine it has to be (i) about doing something that is authentic and not fake and (ii) it must not simply be a thinly veiled sales pitch or endorsement request.

“Random Acts of Kindness” Why kind, human brands will thrive in a connected economy
by @trendwatching

Trend Watching piece from the Spring of 2011 noting the trend that many customers are:

  • “[d]isgusted with big, arrogant, sloppy and out of touch institutions, fed-up consumers around the world increasingly expect businesses to be socially, ethically and environmentally responsible”, and
  • brands can enhance the brand experience for customers if they do a good job adding a human kind touch to their customer engagement.

The piece provides tips on how your brand can engage in Random Acts of Kindness. Two key tip included are:

  1. “Be genuine. R.A.K. should demonstrate a brand’s attitude, not be a (temporarily) welcome exception to it. Any cold-hearted, stuck-in-the-past brand who thinks it can fake it will be unmasked in today’s transparent marketplace. And the backlash won’t be random.”
  2. “Don’t intrude, or be pushy, or sell. This isn’t about you or your brand, it’s about the recipient.”

The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation bills its website as a “resource for people committed to spreading kindness”. The  website shares stories and provides “kindness” resources.  It focuses on the small things that help foster a connected and kind world.  While Random Acts of Kindness could be grand gestures, the real essence of the idea is the little things that build a kinder gentler society.