How To Build and Manage A Winning Brand
The following issues are important to consider when building a brand, even if that brand is called YOU, Inc.
1. Great Brands tie into our emotions.
It is crucial that this link be present and underlying all brand building efforts. If your brand efforts don't touch people at an emotional level, their power to leverage and attract is nil. If your own brand building efforts (You, Inc.) are not emotionally driven then your power to sustain your brand building efforts will be weak!
2. Brands are never-ending stories!
Branding is a journey. The path that a brand takes is always a bit unknown. This is a key point. We do not always know what lies in the "implicate order." Therefore branding is both recognition and management of the present as well as creating the space and opportunity for emergent possibilities within the context of the journey.
3. Brands have lasting value and transcend fad.
While it is cool...to be cool, what matters is what lasts. Moving our brand into a position where it has to be cool to survive is sounding a death nell. Coolness is a result of the brand acceptance, not the brand intention. It will pay to remember that!
4. Great Brands are consistent in appearance.
Everything you do to promote your brand needs design consistency. Continuous management of appearance is critical to creating brand equity and leverage. The biggest part of attraction that many people forget, is that people need to know you're there! Brand consistency must be seamless and transparent...the effects are clear, the intention is subtle elegance.
5. Brands re-create categories!
Look what Blockbuster did for video. Boston Market for fast food. Nike for sports. Starbucks for coffee. Each and every one of these great brands have one thing in common, they became protagonists in view of a simple goal, to reinvent the entire category.
6. You can brand ANYTHING, even You!
What makes people desire one thing over another? How does one brand attract people over another? Anything can be managed as a brand by following simple rules and by consistently outperforming the other items in the category. This performance doesn't have to be validated only accepted!
7. Great Brands have a clear identity!
Successful brands know themselves and what they are about. They have become clear regarding their own boundaries and the need to position themselves for success considering all the possibilities in the whole. Sometimes knowing what NOT to do is the key to brand identity.
8. Brand building is a marathon not a sprint!
In today's world of possibilities and global exchange, the only thing is brand. Price has been shown to be superfluous in the presence of a strong performing brand. People want dependability...a known quantity that differentiates itself from the pack of also-rans. People want to feel important and they leverage that through brand identification. Building a brand is a constant and continuous journey...a long-term approach.
9. Brands are involved!
Brand builders consistently show up at the right time, in the right place and in the right way. A knack for great brand building is precisely knowing when to say when. Consider your brands identity, your branding intention and your brand investment and make continuous deposits towards building brand equity.
10. Brands benefit the consumer!
What is your feature-benefit ratio? If people are not better off having used your brand, you're in big trouble! That takes two loci of action, one being; that you as a brand manager place your brand in a position to succeed or . . . don't do it. Two; that the benefits appear to the consumer in a holistic way. It's kind of like the brand that keeps on giving.
Buckminster Fuller is credited with saying that "when you flush a toilet, it goes somewhere." When people use your products and services, the same thing happens. If you sacrifice the long-term value in a holistic sense for some short-term gain, you are endangering your brand equity!
© 2003 JSC Marketing, LLC – All Rights Reserved.
About the Author
With over 20 yrs holding executive level positions in the corporate arena, Jill St Claire discovered that most organizations produce viable products, but they fail to identify who their "best" customers are and how to effectively reach them. St Claire’s proven strategies are now applied to Digital Media Marketing providing cost-effective solutions that increase the "bottom line". Jill@JSCMarketing.com 1.888.435.5156
Jill St Claire, President - JSC Marketing, LLC