How to Make Your Business More Meaningful
Think of some of the brands you love, why do you love them? They might make beautiful products or they might perfectly reflect your style in everything they make but in some cases there might also be a factor of meaningfulness.
Some of the brands I love are all about selling beautiful, quality products but also have values around sustainability or supporting a cause they’re passionate about.
For some of your customers it will be a big factor in their buying decision, giving your products a story behind them that they can tell their friends and for some it might just be a feel good factor. Either way, in this world where we’re becoming more and more aware of our consumer habits it’s a great time to question how you can make your business more meaningful.
Here are some questions to ask yourself to work out how you can make your business more meaningful:
What matters to your customer?
If you sell baby toys, perhaps your customers are passionate about helping mothers less fortunate than them or if you sell gardening products could your audience be passionate about protecting bees and pollinators? Have a think about your audience, what they care about and what matters to them. You can even ask them in a post on social media. What matters to you?
If you’re making your business more meaningful it needs to be authentic, something you really care about. Have a think about the causes you’ve supported in the past. What gets you really frustrated about the world? What experiences have you been through in life that have made you passionate about a cause or movement? See if any of those things match up with your audience’s values.
How can you make your own life more sustainable?
Remember people buy from people, and your customers love getting to know the person that makes or designs their favourite products. Could it be that you do a lot of running for a certain cause that your audience might connect with or that you love growing your own veg so that you don’t have to buy so much from the supermarket that’s travelled a long way to reach your plate. Whatever you’re already doing in your own life that feels good, talk about it with your audience, see if they connect with it and care about the same things as you.
How can you make a difference in the word through your business?
This might feel like a BIG question if you make art, home decor, baby clothes or design print patterns for fabrics or stationery. However the answer to this is easier than you think. I’ve broken it down into a few different possible areas:
You can be considerate of how far your materials travel to get to you, for example if you’re buying materials from overseas, could you get them from the UK without affecting your prices too much? You can also find out more about how your materials are made, are there any suppliers out there who make the materials you need in a more sustainable way? There are also a good range of recycled materials now that are worth exploring.
What can you do in your making process to reduce waste or stop using any chemical dyes for example? If you’re a designer and work digitally can you reduce the energy you’re using or switch your desk lamp to a more energy efficient one? Or did you buy the desk you work at second hand, rather than buying new? The steps you take can be as small and simple as you like, just make sure you’re telling your customers and sharing your values with them.
Postage and packaging
If you’re shipping any kind of physical product you can consider the types of packaging you use or your method of postage. Can you reduce the amount of packaging you use, make it all recyclable or banish plastics from all of your packaging? If this is something you do, make sure you’re telling your customers regularly so that they are aware it’s a part of your business. Checkout my podcast episode with The Botanical Candle company for more tips on how to make your packing more sustainable.
Sharing your knowledge
If you’re passionate about sharing your knowledge or helping young people can you offer to go in and speak at a couple of schools or universities about your craft or about how you work for yourself? This is a great way to connect with up and coming talent and share your experiences to help someone else do what they love.
Whatever your business model or products I’m confident that there are steps you can take to make your business more meaningful. This will not only make you feel good about your business and the impact it’s having but should also help to build a loyal audience who feel like they connect with you on a more personal level.
If you’ve come up with some great ideas, go and put them into action, make the changes you need to make and tell your audience about what you’re doing to make your business even more meaningful.