BRAND STRATEGY //
Emotion and imagination have everything to do with running a business and if you’re serious about building a brand and not just a business they are absolutely vital. You simply can’t do authentic branding without them.
However, you should also combine all that emotion and imagination with a strong dose of rationality and analysis. This is where brand strategy comes in.
The dictionary defines ‘strategy’ as generalship or the art of conducting a campaign and manoeuvring an army. The military definition is completely appropriate because the word itself derives from the Greek word for ‘general’ and that in turn from two words meaning ‘army and to ‘lead’.
So strategy is all about leadership. And in some way it’s about making decisions in demanding circumstances (war or battle), and it’s self evidently about victory (or success). Not many generals deliberately lead their armies to defeat, although clearly lots of them have led armies there by negligence or ignorance or lack of skill.
As a brand you will be just as vulnerable to external circumstances as any general. Sometimes the external influences will give you an edge and sometimes they might be aligned against you. So having a brand strategy will come to your aid like nothing else.
Brand strategy is a description of your desired outcome. It can be fairly general and ‘big picture’ or it can be supported by some level of detail, but it’s essentially about destination and desirability. Brand strategy should not be confused with how that desirable outcome is reached. That’s tactics. The most challenging aspect of developing a brand strategy is to avoid this confusion.
Tactics describe how you are going to reach the destination or the outcome; the things you and your business are actually going to do. Tactics can be fairly detailed or fairly sketchy. For example, what you’re going to do in the coming week will be tactics.
So it’s important to keep brand strategy separate. Brand Strategy is about where you want to go.
BRAND BUILDER ANALYSIS //
We use a system which will provide a basis for your brand strategy. Morphological Analysis enables you to explore and identify new business pathways in a completely non-hierarchical way.
As you can see from the diagram it is simply a matter of drawing pathways across the grid which began to expose the possibilities in this business idea. Revealing these possibilities would in all probability not have occurred just by sitting down and thinking about the ‘Open Source Brewing’ challenge. As you can see we were able to join up any variable in column 1 with any in columns 2, 3 and 4. The maths is simple. In this case it was 9 x 9 x 9 x 9 = 6,561 possibilities.
EXAMPLE: ‘OPEN SOURCE BREWING’ //