The Genesis Path to more effective branding
By: Scott Burkhead, Josh Cruce and Bill Kamp
Branding can be as frustrating and counterproductive as a hammer designed by a committee, or as simple and effective as a couple of smart people understanding how the customer comes to trust and prefer a company or product.
Branding requires digging into the organization and either defining or re-enforcing the way the value of the enterprise is expressed. Sometimes, the brand only requires refining of the positioning and polishing the logo. From time to time marketers become disoriented and think branding has to do with developing a statement of features and benefits. Those are needed, but later.
Trim away all the clutter and we find the inherent value of a product or service is not always what we say it is: the value is actually what the buyer believes it to be. Positioning, and its outspoken sibling, Branding, is less about what the product does and more about how it rewards the customer. Your customer is looking for brands to trust and they like upticks in their self-esteem.
Show me why I should trust you, help me feel better about myself because I choose your brand, and I will buy you and sing your praises to others.
This blend of brand trust and customer satisfaction is established through strategic positioning — effective branding is always a strategic, non-linear activity. Strategic positioning not only differentiates a product or service from its competitors, it also serves as a GPS for the brand and functions as its heart, pumping vital energy through the enterprise.
Finding positioning that can leverage the future success of the brand is hard work. It is one of the most difficult tasks for any organization but also one of the most rewarding.
There is a perception that the work of branding is done in all-nighters fueled by pizza and coffee (and maybe some beer) with whiteboards and sticky notes, and sometime around dawn the handsome young creative director has a eureka moment – and there it is – THE BIG IDEA that’s going to move the world. Slap a presentation together, go home for a nap, then rush to the client meeting.
It does happen that way, sometimes, and I’ve lived through nights like that. The problem with the coffee- drenched cave is inconsistency. Winging it might find gold once in awhile, but to hit pay dirt every time requires a guiding process. Which is one of the reasons we developed a disciplined, comprehensive set of steps called The Genesis Path.
In this position paper you’ll learn:
• A proven path for finding unique customer insights.
• Six steps that move branding from vision to ideation and through execution.
• Category examples of successful use of The Genesis Path.
• How Places can improve their global reputations using these six steps.
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