Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Delivering on the Brand Promise

In our line of work (brand strategy consulting) we spend most of our time helping organizations identify and develop the most advantageous brand strategies and promises. But of equal, and perhaps greater, importance is consistently delivering on those strategies and promises over time. Communicating the brand promise is one thing. Delivering on it is yet another. Communication of the promise is relatively easy. Develop a creative brief, create a marketing plan, retain a marketing agency, develop the creative and the campaign and the media plan and begin to communicate the message to the marketplace. This can all be accomplished within the marketing or communications function itself.

The difficult part is aligning the organization in support of the brand promise. Consider what might be a part of this.  The brand promise might have implications for employee recruitment and training, performance metrics, organization design, internal systems, processes and procedures, customer feedback loops, investment and budgeting decisions, recognition and reward systems, product and service features, quality standards, customer service design… and the list could go on and on.

This implies that internal communication and training regarding the brand strategy and promise is critical to the organization’s success. Everyone must understand what the brand is promising. Further, it would be advantageous for everyone to understand why that particular brand strategy and promise was chosen. Next, each person, from the CEO and members of the leadership team to salespeople and receptionists must understand what he or she can personally do to deliver against the promise. This certainly implies the need for communication and training but also for discussion, dialog, personal commitments and tough decisions.

So when you develop a new brand strategy and promise, understand to what you are committing your organization. Developing plans to align the organization in support of that new strategy and promise is essential.

The only thing worse than not making a unique and compelling brand promise is making one but then failing miserably in delivering against it.

I wish you every success in delivering against your brand’s promise.

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