This contrasts to a brand focused on a promise (which is often mislabeled as it’s purpose) Visa. Their brand promise that they are ‘everywhere you want to be’. Let’s be clear, this is not a purpose. This is an amplification of a competitive advantage (or how you operate), not why you exist. This is best seen when you compare their World Cup ad below to Nike’s:
The meaning of this organisation is grounded in the functional and so it’s ultimately limited. It will never be more than an ad or marketing tactic. Maybe that’s the big distinction that needs to be made – a purpose can apply to everything an organisation does (down the legal department); a promise or positioning will always be limited to the marketing department.