The principle behind gratitude as a state of mind is pretty simple and works by tinkering with individual perception. A grateful person not only acknowledges what they have, they appreciate it. People in a state of abundance (rather than a state of lack) are happier and more productive. When a mind operates in a state of lack, it is more disposed to cheat and steal and or operate with unbounded ambition.
A few months ago I wrote on the subject of brand social value and the importance of viewing a network from the point of view of ‘entity as group’, as well as ‘entity as individual’. To best engage a network we need to not only understand the motivation driving an individual to join a group, but also be aware of the emergent properties that happen when the group is acting as a single network.
Isn’t a brand remarkably similar to a network?
Can we use ‘entity as group’ to help a brand adopt the practice of gratitude?
We can. Here is an example of a grateful brand that is getting some great results:
Western Union’s CEO Hikmet Ersek thanks their customers in a touching one-minute video on the WU Facebook page. He says, “We call our customers our heroes because they inspire us,” and shares his story of what it was like to send money home as an immigrant. This video expression of gratitude is surrounded by a powerful social campaign that combines evocative imagery with empathetic and aspirational narrative, The approach has earned this brand 3,000,000 followers on Facebook, with many posting short anecdotes to the page or reposts. Loyalty is kindled, and customers are providing a treasure trove of qualitative data in the form of shared stories the brand never asked for, and never had to pay for.
Mindfulness is not a niche phenomenon. Oprah’s “Life Class” is a world tour in praise of gratitude and how living in a state of gratitude has transformational benefits. Here’s how four of O’s contributing writers like to say thank you:
- Pay it forward.
- Say it. Face to face.
- Drop a note in the mail.
- Give old-fashioned candies.
While those four ideas may not be practical for all brands, they are indications of the forms of expression that mean something special to people,
When CEOs create a culture of gratitude, a mindset of thankfulness, people within the organization, as well as the organization’s customers and clients, are apt to take notice.
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