Many of my clients are using this Lockdown period to re-assess their offer, re-think their messaging, or re-do their web sites.

Now more than ever you need a crystal-clear idea about what you want your business to achieve, how relevant you are to customers, and why those customers should buy from you and not the competition.

So what is a brand and why is it worth investing your time and resources in one? Arena Business Centre’s asked me to put together a series to shine a light on the truths about the tangible benefits a brand strategy can deliver a business. Over the course of 3 blogs we are going to cover:

  1. What actually is a brand and a brand strategy?
  2. Why do customers value brands and what role do they play?
  3. Why do the world’s most successful companies place such a high value on brands?

What is a brand?

The term brand can mean many things. It can mean a product, a company, even a logo, and if you do settle on one of those terms there is no universal definition of the word brand, which is ironic given one of the roles of a brand is to deliver clarity.

A brand is a product or a service that delivers a consistent and distinctive benefit to a customer. It will contain a set of characteristics that it will use to differentiate itself from its competitors and ensure it remains relevant to its customers. So, it can be a company, a charity, a book or even a church – anything that has a point of view it wants to communicate.

A brand strategy defines and prioritises the purpose and character of your brand. Its role is to inspire and equip the brand team to make the best decisions in the delivery of the brand to its customers and will contain the following:

  1. Brand vision -a vision or destination for the organisation to head towards
  2. Brand positioning – one or two words to express how the brand is positioned in the minds of the people charged with creating and delivering it.
  3. Brand proposition – often used as a tagline, the brand proposition expresses the brand’s positioning to all who need to understand the brand. (starting with the team)
  4. Brand values – this describes how you should be able to sum up the character of an organization, how it behaves

A brand strategy makes good business sense.

If every team member understands the brand and what it stands for, and if that understanding is applied to their specific role, and pervades their products and services, then the customer will be delivered a consistent experience every single time they interact with the brand. This consistency is not only good for the customer, it’s good for the organization as it ensures its assets are used as efficiently as possible, knowing that their next product, campaign or sponsorship deal will support the way the brand is seen by the world.

In the next instalment we are going to look at why customers value brands.

Bruce M McKinnon is a brand strategist and the author of the award-winning book ‘What’s Your Point?’ . The book explores how brand strategy can fuel business growth, referencing some of the world’s most successful brands as well as sharing case studies from his own global consulting practice. The book can be purchased from Amazon, or to get free content and a chance to win a copy of the book, visit http://www.thebrandarrow.com/