A brand strategy is not an entity in its own right.
It is the analysis and shaping of the output from a number of disciplines which collectively define the most appropriate approach for the development of a brand.
As such, the process of creating a brand strategy will vary considerably depending on whether the task is related to the creation of a new brand, a brand refresh or a new direction and focus for a brand. Additionally creating brands for an international or global market are more complex than creating brands for the UK market only.
Typically work starts with a fact-finding mission – understanding the catalyst for change and the who, the what, the where and the why from which we can then define and shape the how.
A client workshop is a really effective way of doing this. These can vary considerably in their style, format and length varying from a few hours to a number of days dependent on the task and the needs of the client.
A range of bespoke group exercises and solus activities are devised and incorporated into the programme, designed to help businesses look at both themselves and their sector and competitors in a different and stimulating way.
Undertaking these activities off site proves highly valuable as it helps everyone involved to fully focus on the importance of contributing to the workshop.
Depending on the specific task, staff interviews, store visits or group tasks may play a role in information gathering for example.
Sessions often commence by looking at the very core of what a business provides or produces and then developing a way of talking about this and finally defining the most appropriate and effective way of visually expressing the business or product through visual planning exercises.
This often means that businesses need to take a long, clinical look at themselves and challenge their thinking and approach.
This is the real value of a brand strategy, the creation of a foundation for growth and a clear roadmap for a brand development programme based on real tangible equities defined through a robust understanding of the business, the task, the objectives and opportunities.
At the end of this process a clearly defined brief will be created, from which a programme of work will be structured to facilitate the creation of the most appropriate brand strategy through a process of validation and challenge.
Typically this will include research, customer insights, usage and attitudes studies, market sector reviews, ethnography, semiotics and a forensic dissection of competitor brands.
With this activity complete,key opportunities for the development of aunique and differentiated brand will have been identified and the process of creating a brand equity can commence with the knowledge that it is based on sound knowledge.
Without this key work taking place it is likely that any brand creation activity will fail resulting in a wasted investment of both time and money.
Filed under: Brand Strategist
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