Selling for selling is no longer valid. The income accounts may not think the same, but business values have more weight in consumers. From attending to cultural diversity to animal welfare through respect for the environment. As Miguel Vergara, director of digital strategy at Accenture Strategy Iberia, explained, users are becoming more sophisticated in their decisions. "In our latest study, we found that price and quality continue in the first place in the purchase process, but in the third one, the social purpose and commitment of the brand emerges. In Spain, this trend is going to more, "he said.
One of the keys in this change of habits is provided by Mar Doñate, director of Marketing and R & D of Paschal Quality, when she has assured that the consumer has been empowered due to the crisis that the system has experienced in the last decade. "He feels, thinks and wants his decisions to affect both the system and the companies. He has a sense of responsibility in the purchasing process ", he assured during the breakfast organized by EL PAÍS Retina. Despite this new context, companies face the weight dilemma that keeps the price. In the words of Rodrigo de Salas, director of communication, corporate identity and responsible business of Leroy Merlin, we do not always consume by values, although we know at what moment we acquire something foreign to our thinking.
The internal functioning of the brands has also been affected by the jump that values have given to users. What they think from the outside impacts more on business survival. "Before we did not listen to the street. Now we propose some things based on what people expect from us, "pointed out Maria Luisa de la Peña, deputy director of Naturgy. It is difficult to measure these thoughts, although social networks have facilitated this task. As stressed by Mosiri Cabezas, digital head of IKEA Spain, they are in charge of making a company more responsible or social in the eyes of third parties. "We are obliged to be coherent with what we build," he said.
Without consumers, obviously, an organization will have no choice but to close. They do not count on the absolute truth, although they do condition the commercial future. As suggested by David Menéndez, director of corporate social responsibility at Bankia, it is impossible to do everything they say. "Listening is fundamental to anticipate what they demand. What is clear is that honesty is non-negotiable, "he said. De Salas has joined this opinion and has put a graphic example of the importance of reaching people with certain values: "Either we are ethical and responsible or we will not be. There's no point in pretending to be James Bond and being perceived as Mr. Bean. "
The role of digitization
For Vergara, the impact of digital transformation is more than evident. So much so that has opened the possibility that we start talking about a post-digital era. "Traceability with blockchain impacts on animal welfare. Algorithms suggest purchase options beyond our decision-making process. All this is already part of the brands, "he suggested. Cabezas has been more vehement, for whom all the technological debate would have to be overcome in the companies. "The digital is just a surname because what there is is a transformation. Technology must be a lever, but with a specific purpose, "he concluded.
In what most speakers have agreed is that, in the future, they will have to bet more for the human factor. Their business models can not be based on exponential consumption, individualism and industrialization without control. "The time has come to align ourselves with the values of citizens to improve collaboration between the two," Menéndez has suggested. "We have to be more faithful to our ethics. For example, there are people with unpaid bills and we have to help them in some way ", added de la Peña. Nobody present at breakfast has a crystal ball that divines what is to come. What has been clear is that what represents a brand has ceased to be worth only for marketing. It has leaked fully in all the windows, whether physical or digital.