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July 15, 2022


5 min read

Is Your Brand Delivering for Your Business?

Charlie Cosad
Is Your Brand Delivering for Your Business?

The brand. It’s one of those things everyone believes they understand but finds difficult to put into words. 

“Of course I know what my brand is. Just don’t ask me to explain it.”

Things that are about individual perception are like that. Brands are personal, and they are everywhere: cars, universities, companies, hotels, musical groups, celebrities, restaurants, sports teams … The list is endless. Many brands bring out strong emotions, with some referred to as ‘polarizing brands.’ (Could be a good topic for a future chirp. We’re looking at you, Yankee fans.) This ‘I just know’ understanding of a brand is fine until building yours or establishing a new product in the marketplace has a critical role in your business success. 

When brands are built and managed well, they seem unified and powerful. When they aren’t built and managed correctly, they disappear into the marketplace, languish, and will likely be overtaken by the competition. In business, anything managed well has been defined and measured, and that includes a brand. 

When talking to clients about how they can build their business or establish a new product (brand) in the marketplace, we always have the topic of brand in the back – or maybe front – of our minds. 

Here are several best practices to help you build a powerful brand. 

From brand perception to business reality 

Let’s start with how brand is defined at BlueByrd.

A brand is a promise – a promise of the experience a stakeholder will have when they engage the brand.

BlueByrd’s definition is a distillation of the many out there, and ours is specifically designed for B2B with key words.

  • Stakeholder. Be clear about the brand’s target. Who is forming a perception of the brand, and what do you want that perception to be? Customers, investors, prospective employees, and communities need to be considered individually. 
  • Engage. Get a clear understanding of where and how stakeholders are engaging your brand, and any relative priority. Do you understand where customers engage the brand? The relative impact of each? How that guides business development investments?
  • Experience. Understand what the stakeholder (particularly customer) experience will be during the engagement. Will it be consistent, build trust, and reinforce what you want associated with your brand? 
  • Promise. Set out the value you will deliver through a brand promise. Is ‘the promise’ of the value you deliver differentiated from your competition and clearly communicated?

“Of course we consistently build our brand. I just know that, too.”

For developing strategy and plans to introduce and build brands, we have found no better framework than one offered by Wally Olins, a British corporate identity and branding legend. 

If you haven’t heard of this Brit, we encourage you to dive into the rabbit hole.

Among the many gems Wally provided over the years, one stands out for us from his book titled “Wally Olins: The Brand Handbook” in which a brand manifests itself through four brand vectors.

That center box can also be thought of as the brand promise. Setting that out clearly to center and ground your organization can be hard work but well worth it.

Consider the four vectors Wally proposes: 

  • Services and products. For customers, this is the big one and will drive what they associate with your brand, particularly whether they are getting value for their money. 
  • Physical environments. In B2B this can vary widely in importance and by stakeholder, from customers never visiting, to facilities being a very important part of sales.  
  • Communications. There are so many areas to spend money in today, both physical and digital, that it’s critical to focus and prioritize, target, and highlight your differentiation.   
  • Behavior. We really like the way Wally uses the word behavior rather than employees. In B2B this is arguably the most important engagement area for customers. Are all your employees consistently building your brand at every opportunity?

These four categories are great for framing how customers form brand perceptions, what you want those to be, and then moving on to developing business strategies, plans, and allocating budgets. Much of this makes its way into BlueByrd workshops.

The Final Chirp

For your latest key technology entering the market, you might take a look at your own plans and budgets against these four vectors. Any opportunities to improve things? If so, we’d love to hear from you. (Even if not.)

Your new revenue growth partner.

Revenue growth is coming. Are you ready for takeoff? We are.