B2B Brand Strategy
“Companies unable to articulate business value experience 24% longer sales cycles and 20% deeper price discounting.” (SiriusDecisions, IDC)
I believe the primary reason brand strategy is so misunderstood by corporate executives is they have mistakenly purchased brand identity makeovers disguised as brand strategy from too many self-serving creative agencies. The resulting lack of impact to the firm’s bottom line has left most executives soured and questioning the value of branding and brand strategy.
What is a Brand?
“Products are made in the factory, but brands are created in the mind.” (Walter Landor)
One way to define a brand is by focusing on the associations that come to mind when people think about a brand. Another way to define a brand is in terms of its elements: “The intangible sum of a product’s attributes: its name, packaging, and price, its history, its reputation, and the way it’s advertised.” Brands help people make a choice — a choice among products, services, political parties, and so on.
What is Brand Strategy?
The purpose of branding is ensure your product or service is the preferred choice in the minds of your key audiences (whether customers, employees, or prospective employees).
However, before you brand anything you must be able to clearly answer three simple questions which should be core to your business strategy:
- What are we selling?
- Who is it intended for?
- What is the benefit to customers?
Brand strategy contains four (4) key components and we will lead you through a best-practice process to define each as part of your brand strategy:
- Brand Idea (what the brand stands for + mission, vision, positioning)
- Architecture (structured relationship between brands in a portfolio)
- Personality (values and human authenticity)
- Identity (naming, brandline, tone of voice, visual identity)
Additionally, we will help you adopt and implement your new brand across your organization which includes a combination of physical, digital and human touch points.
The Impact of Brand Strategy on Business Performance
Business performance is based on the behavior of customers — namely, whether they choose your product or service. Effective brand strategy helps a brand distinguish itself from competitors and positively impacts business performance through a connected process:
Brand Idea > Customer Experience > Brand Perception > Customer Behavior > Business Performance
The financial impact of getting this right can include the following:
- Shortened sales cycles
- Increased profit margin per transaction
- Greater customer lifetime value (CLTV)
- Higher employee engagement and retention (and often lower salary costs)
- Increased enterprise value (market capitalization, M&A value)
I am part of a brand strategy team that delivers real brand strategy that delivers real business results.
In addition to my experience rebranding companies as a CMO, our team includes experts in brand research, brand development, and brand governance from Top 5 global brand agencies and even an Academy Award nominated film maker.