Today is Independence Day in the United States, celebrating the birth of the country in 1776. Perhaps surprisingly, it’s also an occasion that reminds us of the impact strong brands have on business.
Just as the original 13 colonies gained their independence from England, a strong brand liberates businesses from many challenges in the marketplace.
1. Independence from commodity pressures. Brands are distinct and add unique value to their category and for their customer. Commodities do not.
2. Independence from channel masters. Brands are less likely to become enslaved by a dominate retailer. Their market and demand is built on the strength of the brand with the customer, not the retailer.
3. Independence from me-too thinking. Brands demand differentiation and the best efforts and imagination from everyone on the team to be creative and innovative.
4. Independence from directionless mindsets. Brands must have focus. There must be a strategy to follow. There must be accountability.
5. Independence from obscurity. Whether your brand is strictly B2B or B2C, your brand awareness is foundational to everything.
6. Independence from trying to be all things to all people. Your brand is defined as much by who it isn’t for as who it is for. Revel in that. It gives your brand value.
7. Independence from pricing pressures. While it is true nothing sold is immune to market fluctuations in price, be it from rising costs in raw materials or transportation, brands will retain share better than unbranded or poorly branded products.
8. Independence from price shopping. Brand loyal customers stay loyal. You can’t buy trust. But they will buy it from you.
9. Independence from being held hostage. By either the contacts of the sales department’s leading producer or the charismatic charm of the CEO, the brand is bigger than them. It survives the comings and goings of its stewards.
10. Independence from setbacks. Spokespeople make mistakes. Products become defective. Packaging can be tampered. But the brand, if properly managed through the crisis, will live on … and may even prosper more.
11. Independence from dead ends. Nothing lives forever—not even brands. But strong brands afford options in their lifecycle that weak brands or unbranded products will never have. And strong brands can often cross boundaries into new markets to grow.
So we urge you to celebrate your independence from these and other challenges for business by dedicating yourself to building a stronger brand for your future and your company’s future.
The Blake Project Can Help: Please email us to learn how we help brands gain independence and accelerate growth.
Branding Strategy Insider is a service of The Blake Project: A strategic brand consultancy specializing in Brand Research, Brand Strategy, Brand Licensing and Brand Education