Are Your Brand and Corporate Values Aligned?

What Personality is Your Brand? (courtesy of Me, Myself and Ashlea)

Like individuals, brands have values and personality. According to Branding Strategy Insider, these are often derived from a combination of the following:

a) The personality and values of the organisation’s founder
b) The personality and values of the organisation’s current leader
c) The personality and values of the organisation’s most zealous customers
d) The brand’s carefully crafted design/positioning
e) The personality and values of the employees of the organisation 

Notice in the list above that 4 out of 5 factors influencing a brand's personality and values are related to the people involved in its development. Collectively, these internal and external stakeholders play a strong role in steering how the brand is perceived.

A formal, hierarchical organisation beset by bureaucratic rules is unlikely to generate the next Google, or Apple. Similarly, a casual, jeans and T-shirt company is unlikely to become a supplier of military or medical equipment.

In developing your product or service brand personality and values, do consider how it matches with the overall ethos, culture and personality of your organisation. Consider the following:

1) What is your corporate culture like? How would you describe the spirit of the organisation - vibrant, dynamic, laidback, or perfectionistic? 

2) What are your corporate values like? Are qualities like trustworthiness, integrity, and reliability more important than creativity, innovativeness and quirkyness?

3) Who are your likely customers to be and what would appeal to them from your product/service standpoint?   

4) Who are the "tastemakers" and trendsetters within your organisation? Is your CEO somebody with a strong and overwhelming brand aura like Richard Branson or Steve Jobs? If not, who else within the organisation would personify the brand?

5) Take a reality check. Look at yourself in the mirror. With your current resources, talents and competencies vis-a-vis what's out there, think about what values you can reasonably build into your brand. Don't force a square peg down a round hole.

By aligning your product or service brand personalities and values with that of your organisation, you're better able to harness the power of your collective energy, wisdom and passion in creating and developing a winning product.

Strong brands like those above have distinct personalities (courtesy of Simplify This)

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