Brands that are memorable and enduring don’t just happen. They take planning, thought, execution and maintenance. Brands that speak to customers rest on three legs–Create. Build. Protect. Each is separate, yet interrelated and equally important. Ignore one, and you’re left with a two-legged stool, wobbly to say the least.
What does it mean to “create” a brand?
“To “create” is “to evolve from one’s own thought or imagination” or “to cause to come into being, as something unique that would not naturally evolve.”
Creating a strong brand begins with an imagined and perhaps idealized outcome in the marketplace for the product or service the brand will signify or represent. Every object that exists in physical world reality began with a thought, a concept or idea. Someone gave birth to a vision which did not exist in physical reality. Today’s brands are no exception.
The Eiffel Tower and the Taj Mahal began with an idea. The idea for any structure must be transferred from the visualized ideal to create a blueprint from which to construct the building, a step-by-step road map to re-create that vision in physical world reality. The blueprint provides the building team with detailed plans, including exact measurements, materials, and instructions on how the parts assemble into the whole. Without a blue print, the resulting structure is not only left to fortune; the odds of achieving the imagined result are greatly diminished. When it comes to creating a brand, it is much the same.
Before building a brand, create a blueprint. A brand blueprint you ask? An business intent upon creating a memorable brand in the hearts and minds of its consumers also needs a blueprint. Yes, to the non expert, the branding process can seem mysteriously shrouded in vague concepts, which understood and properly applied make every difference. The brand blueprint can will help maximize the chances for a brand, which like the Taj Mahal, withstands the test of time.
What should you include in your brand blueprint?
1. “Position” Your Brand.
The first element of the brand blueprint is to create and carve out a credible and profitable place in the consumer’s minds. This happens in one of three ways:
- Being first in the niche or market
- Adopting a position relative to the competition
- Re-positioning the competition[i]
The positioning adopted for your brand “is as fundamental as a strong financial plan in creating long-term value for a business. It is the engine of sustainable brand value.[ii]”