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How Sustainable Brands Add Value

The companies that scored highest on sustainability in our survey also saw the biggest revenue payoffs.

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How Sustainable Brands Add Value

There is a science that can help consumer goods companies see the link between sustainable brands and consumer value.

To understand what underpins a consumer’s perception of value, we identified 30 fundamental Elements of Value® that fall into four categories: functional, emotional, life-changing, and global impact. In the global impact category, we recently added three sustainability-related Elements of Value: cares for the earth, ethical, and invests in well-being.

Sustainability can help fortify existing Elements of Value for a brand. More natural ingredients can reinforce the element of quality, for example. The most successful brands go a step further by using sustainability to add higher-level elements such as providing hope around particular challenges or fostering well-being.

Our survey of more than 8,000 European consumers and over 60 brands across eight consumer goods categories found that brands that scored highest on sustainability Elements of Value generated five times the revenue growth of companies scoring lowest. Among incumbent brands only, those that embedded sustainability had twice the growth.

Elements of Value® is a registered trademark of Bain & Company, Inc.

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