More about the brand platform
I promised to speak to competitive information relevant to establishing a brand platform. So here goes.
Actually, I’ll devote three blogs to this subject because the type and source of information will be different depending upon what you’re branding.
This post concerns branding a locally-owned retail company.
So first, why assess retail competitors in the first place?
You’re attempting to find a “position” in your prospects’ minds you can call your own – a positive, relevant position people will warm to. If a competitor already owns a particular position, you cannot own it, too. You must find another way to position and differentiate your business. It’s important. Continue reading Competitive assessments lead to strong positioning strategies.
A major component of a brand platform is an identification and analysis of your competition.
First off, identifying competition isn’t as easy as it might seem, particularly if you’ve developed a newly-conceived product or service. You’re first reaction is, “I don’t have any competitors”. But this just isn’t true. Continue reading Brand Platform: competitive factors
Finishing up on the stakeholder groups that might affect you brand, I’ll just touch on two: media and investors.
To include these in a brand platform (aka the brand-building blueprint), usually involves no more than making sure the brand does not violate a principle of investor or media relations.
Therefore at minimum, the platform needs to be reviewed by your PR and investor relations personnel for problems and issues.
In an ideal situation, those functions should probably be represented in the platform formulation process early on. Their inputs may save time and effort later, and their new perspective might produce some branding strategy nuances that can strengthen the brand as a whole. Continue reading Consider investors and the media when developing your brand platform
If you rely on distributors or retailers to actively merchandise your products (as opposed to just providing shelf space), you should include these entities as a plank in your branding platform.
That’s not to say you ignore the ultimate consumer. Those folks will probably always be number one branding priority unless you’re selling fresh fish or some other true commodity. But if distributors must also service, if retail personnel need to be sales trained, if manufacturer’s reps must know your product intimately before B2B purchase agents consider you, then they must be considered. Continue reading Must you brand for your external distribution networks?
Continuing with stakeholder profiles and info that’s of value in developing a brand – and therefore needs to be documented in your Brand Profile – I’ll address employees today.
After consumers, I’d say employees are the most important stakeholder group for most organizations. Continue reading The branding platform should reflect employee participation in the brand
In describing stakeholders for your brand platform, prospects and customers are usually considered the most important groups.
For products, this is a fairly easy task (unless you’re launching a new technology with lots of potential applications) because products are usually developed with a customer profile in mind. There’ll be research performed as to the number, the demographics and the psychographics. Continue reading Profiling customers and prospects for the brand platform