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Meet the brands in the running for the FT Investment in Brand Award 2022

By Michael Nutley | Writer for The Drum

May 23, 2022 | 8 min read

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The FT has partnered with The Drum Awards for Marketing once again to recognize the importance of long-term thinking, investment and planning. Here, we meet the brand nominees in the running this year.

The FT Investment in Brand Award 2022

The FT Investment in Brand Award 2022

2022 sees the tenth anniversary of The Drum Awards for Marketing. Since 2012, we’ve been recognizing and rewarding the most effective marketing campaigns, companies and people from around the world.

We’ve spent a decade looking for brands and marketers that truly understand their customers, and who are able to turn that understanding into compelling, impactful and, most importantly, effective marketing that delivers tangible results against business objectives.

The FT Investment in Brand Award 2022

In modern marketing, where brands are built step-by-step at every customer touchpoint, consistency across channels is crucial. But equally important is consistency over time. Marketers that stick to their brand’s values and promises build trust with their customers, and trust is the basis of every long-term relationship.

This is why The Drum has teamed up with the FT once again to recognize the importance of long-term thinking, investment and planning to marketing success, as part of The Drum Awards for Marketing 2022.

In the wake of the pandemic, this year’s award will celebrate those brands that have shown resilience in the face of change, overcoming short-term pressures and continuing to invest in the creation of long-term brand equity. The judges will consider the different perspectives of what investment in brand could mean, recognizing the strategies that successfully balance social purpose, sustainability, communication and growth.

The nominees

1. Lombard Odier

Swiss Group Lombard Odier, founded in 1796, was the first global wealth and asset manager to be awarded B Corp status. It has focused on the transition to what it calls the CLIC economy (Circular, Lean, Inclusive and Clean) as the key to its investment strategy. The firm adopted ‘Rethink Everything’ as the key plank of its branding in 2016 and subsequent marketing has developed the theme.

Last year it signed a multi-year partnership with Oxford University to foster research into sustainable finance and investment, creating the first endowed professorship in sustainable finance at any major global research university. Also last year, the bank launched its Target NetZero strategies, which invest in companies transforming their business models to meet the needs of a decarbonizing world while still maintaining profitability. Its new ‘Natural Capital’ strategy focuses on investing in companies that protect and leverage the regenerative power of nature.

2. Dove

​Dove’s ‘Campaign for Real Beauty’ began in 2004. According to Alessandro Manfredi, executive vice-president of Dove: “It’s become Dove’s mission to make a positive experience of beauty universally accessible to every woman.” The brand’s ‘Courage is beautiful’ campaign during the pandemic featured photos of frontline workers, to highlight what they were going through and thank them for their dedication.

The latest manifestation of Dove’s self-described “actionist” approach is a new campaign in China – ‘My beauty, my say’ – created following the revelation that seven out of 10 women in China retouch their selfies before posting. “Dove wants to highlight this issue and provide tools to parents and carers to help young people navigate social media in a positive way,” Manfredi says.

3. Adidas

There are few companies that feature prominently on lists of the most valuable brand and the most sustainable business, and that are also frequent winners of advertising awards. Adidas is one such. The company ranks 82nd in the Corporate Knights 2022 sustainability ranking, and at 51 in Forbes magazine’s list of most valuable brands, the highest of any sportswear manufacturer.

Perhaps the high point of the brand’s pandemic was its ‘Ready For Sport’ campaign, which launched in April 2020 and looked forward to the return of live sport. Although the brand wouldn’t release figures, in late 2020 Adidas’s global head of brand comms, Fabio Tambosi told The Drum: “It has been one of the most impactful and highest viewed campaigns in our brand history. Our brand sentiment right now is super hot.”

4. Autodesk

Autodesk is a 40-year-old purpose-driven B2B software company which enables architects, engineers, manufacturers and designers to create smarter buildings and innovative, efficient products. Its core values are that “technology, deployed appropriately, can help to solve some of our most challenging global issues.”

It ranks third in the Corporate Knights sustainability ratings, and is also 89 in Kantar’s Top 100 most valuable brands. And its new content marketing team, instigated as part of its move to account-based marketing, recently won the International Content Marketing Award for best content marketing team.

5. Converse

Converse was acquired by Nike in 2003, for $309m. Last year the brand hit revenues of $2.21bn. Its core value is the belief that “unleashing the creative spirit can change the world”, and it aims to empower its community partners “to unleash their creative spirit through music, art and skate, with a focus on inspiring and enabling young people to be their true authentic selves”.

This belief has long seen the brand pursue a policy of working with designers to create custom versions of its shoes, and to allow buyers to customize their own purchases. In 2020 it turned this policy into a marketing strategy called ‘Converse All Stars’, aiming to mentor around 3,000 young creators and turn them into a creative team for the brand.

6. Patagonia

Last year’s winner, Patagonia proves that being purpose-driven, sustainable, and making money are not exclusive. In 2018, Patagonia changed its mission statement to “Patagonia is in business to save our home planet.” Prior to the 2020 US presidential election, it sewed the message “Vote the assholes out” on the tag of its regenerative organic stand-up shorts, which promptly sold out.

Patagonia doesn’t reveal sales figures, but in a 2020 interview, chief exec Rose Marcario said that its annual sales were approaching $1bn.

7. Nudie Jeans

Nudie launched in 2001 with the aim of being the world’s most sustainable jeans brand. In 2020, 98.6% of its products were sustainably produced. It also introduced a “free repairs for life” service, with its own repair shops and support for partner stockists to offer repairs.

In 2019 alone, Nudie Jeans repaired 63,281 pairs and collected 11,573 pairs of jeans that were resold or used for patching material. Those recovered jeans saved 443,000,000 liters of water that would have been used in producing the same number of new jeans. It offered financial support to its retail partners through the pandemic, and when budgeting for 2021, approached it as it would a normal year, and beat its targets.

Final judging will be done by The Drum Awards for Marketing 2022 jury, and the winner will be announced at the live awards show on June 15, 2022.

For all the details of this and every other category at The Drum Awards for Marketing 2022, visit here.

Modern Marketing Brand Purpose Brand Strategy

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