The Psychology of Corporate Vision and Mission Statements

How seemingly irregular certain products become household names is often unclear. In a very competitive market flooded with technologically advanced phones, how do Apple and Samsung become virtually unrivalled market leaders?

Although big marketing teams are responsible for specific products, brands work tirelessly to cultivate an image to create a sense of confidence among consumers. One of the key means this occurs is through mission and vision statements.
The statements themselves are not immediately recognisable to most consumers, but reading them should give you an overwhelming sense of familiarity – one line from Apple’s vision statement is “We believe in the simple not the complex.”

Sound familiar?

What Are Mission and Vision Statements?

A mission or vision statement is a simple way for companies to demonstrate a desired image in addition to short and long-term goals. To put it simply, a mission statement describes the current intentions of a company, while a vision statement outlines more long-term, broad goals.

These statements might demonstrate relatability with a certain demographic, a desire to be the best at something, or simply express a want to help consumers in some way. Statements from some of the most profitable companies in the world often encompass all of these values – and more – in very elegant and digestible ways.

More Than A Product

The power of these statements lie in the ability for audiences to quickly determine the values of a company. If the audience believes in and connects with these values, there is a much greater likelihood of them staying loyal to the brand – for this reason effective mission and vision statements often incorporate a degree of emotional appeal.

An excellent example of introducing emotion is the Starbucks mission statement:

“To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.”

This statement is less about coffee and more about caring for customers and fostering community – issues which the common consumer will readily connect with. For some consumers, it might be enough to know

The Starbucks vision statement is as follows:

“to establish Starbucks as the premier purveyor of the finest coffee in the world while maintaining our uncompromising principles while we grow.”

This vision statement succeeds as it makes reference to the emotional mission statement, while cementing the desire to provide world-class coffee.

Developing an impactful mission or vision statement

Although consumers consciously connect products with companies, the most profitable high-profile companies successfully appeal to consumers subconsciously through emotionally-charged mission and vision statements.

This is how, in the case of the Starbucks reference above, customers are more likely to by coffee on a whim because they actively support the company, rather than strictly feeling the need for caffeine. A strong enough connection to a seemingly innocuous statement can then lead to the ultimate in marketing: a consumer’s lifelong allegiance.

Consider those that only buy Apple products or only buy Nike sneakers. These followings are not just formed through a quality product – despite offering excellent products – but through a trusting, emotional connection to the brand itself.

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