Thursday, December 28, 2006

Do you have a problem with the brand of 'brand?

As discussed in a previous post regarding the meaning of brand, I wonder sometimes that perhaps the brand of 'brand' is weak and maybe it could use significant strengthening. Graphic Design and Advertising professionals are probably most at fault for mis-interpretting the brand as simply the logo and/or image. When they discuss a re-branding they typically refer to an image correction. Maybe all of us have to re-label what we do to help ease the confusion associated with brand terminology.

I imagine if we think of the our brands as our reputation then it would go a long way to helping companies manage their brands more effectively. It would help them understand that in a lot of cases we can physically control how our brands are percieved and in many cases we can't as our brands are forming outside of our sphere of influence. We simply have to focus and embrace those situattions we can control and hope that those we can't will at least be positively influenced by our worthy efforts.

An example of this would be how we respond to a brand emergency. Martha Stewart is a great example. Martha Stewart's reputation prior to the emergency was focused and carefully groomed. She emerged from the situation stronger than when she entered the fog. The public trusted her, she lived her brand and her reputation rewarded her. We should all have such a brilliant brand symbol. Even at her brand's lowest moment or so it seemed, that trust in Martha positioned her as victim. The brand emerged invigorated and renewed.

I don't kid myself that Graphic Design and Advertising professionals are going to re-think how they address brand because they have their individual agendas, but I am hoping that is some small way, dialogue such as this will at least help to educate companies willing to listen. I guess one up-side to the confusion is if your competition doesn't get it - so much the better for you!

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