Brand is NOT a product, package, offer or service, NOT a name, logo, package design, ad campaign or slogan. Brand is the sum of all associations, characterizations or perceptions in someone else’s head regarding a specific offer (product, service, organization, etc.)
Brand is the promise and delivering the promise is branding Simply put it – brand = identity & reputation identity is (what you say – name, logo, marketing, advertising) and reputation is (what you do – customer service, employee behaviour, product service performance)
Brand provides value to a business, better business perfomance, better revenue which builds brand value and equity for the organization.
When undertaking a branding program, it is important to understand the scope of what constitutes a brand and to determine what elements must be developed, optimized and implemented. Simply stated, a brand is the promise an organization makes to the stakeholders in its endeavors, while branding is aligning all the related stakeholder interactions with the promise. This is contrary to the common understanding of a brand being focused on an organization’s visual system (graphics, colors, type, photography etc.) only. The following schematic depicts each of the primary elements that may be included in a branding initiative.
The first step is to ensure that the purpose (mission), values and vision of success are clearly defined and / or relevant. For XYZ, the purpose is how they deliver value to its customers – in other words, what does XYZ do. The values are a set of beliefs that form the foundation of the organization. The vision is what the organization sets out to achieve over some period of time (typically a period of ten to twenty years). A robust vision is forward looking and most often includes three goals that bring clarity to the mission. Most importantly, the mission is the motivator for people to get involved in the effort.
Once purpose, values and vision (including goals) are clearly set forth the next step is to develop the brand vision / core idea. The brand vision becomes the foundation upon which all other elements of the brand are defined and designed including the visual system, naming, tone of voice, environment and service behavior.
Prior to launching a branding initiative for XYZ, it is critical that the scope of the initiative be defined and a robust process be used for implementation.