Monday, October 8, 2012

10 Critical Lessons From: "Corporate Branding & Corporate Brand Performance"

"Corporate Branding and Corporate Brand Performance" (2001, Fiona Harris and Leslie de Chernatony) is a little difficult to wade through but it offers a few really good nuggets for students of brand.

The most important thing to learn from the article is that brand is not a thing-in-itself but rather an intangible that yields measurable results.

1. Brands start with 
  • Purpose (vision)
  • Principle (values)
2. Purpose and principle lead to positioning - "what the brand is, who it is for and what it offers." 

3. The brand has two layers:
  • Base layer is functionality - the "what." 
  • Secondary layer is personality - the "how."

4. Personality yields relationship - internally between employees and externally with customers. It is critical that the business model incorporate specifications around what types of relationships are wanted.

5. Relationships are formalized in presentation, meaning the structured ways in which the organization interacts with the public. These can be divided into two kinds of categories:

  • Advertising
  • Customer interaction with employees

6. Presentation yields image, or the symbolic meaning of the brand. This is temporary and fluctuates over time.

7. Reputation is the more lasting form of image. It's the aggregate of:
  • A single brand's image over time
  • A range of stakeholder views about the brand
  • (One would assume - DB) multiple brand images over time
8. A positive reputation yields improved business results.

9. It is critical that the organization's brand builders are aligned with operational staff.

10. At the end of the day, business results are significantly affected by reputation, which are in turn affected by brand, which are in turn driven by corporate culture. Therefore the importance of this factor should not be underestimated.