Deciding whether to grow or to remain hunkered down is a key issue for America’s business leaders today. Companies can do more to take their future into their own hands and move forward faster in the economy by addressing their brand. Here are five critical steps that a company can take to drive growth through branding.
1. Know where you are relative to the competition.
Continuously monitoring your competition will help identify where you are today and set the direction for the future. It will help to determine whether your positioning is still unique or if it needs to evolve to better separate yourself from the pack. It will also gauge the momentum of your corporate brand on multiple attributes. Familiarity and favorability measures versus your industry and the competition can provide key strategies for future growth.
2. Develop a long-term five-year brand strategy.
Your brand strategy should support your business strategy. Base the branding budget on what it will take to achieve specific revenue and asset growth goals. Branding is an investment, so establishing long-term goals today is critical for future success.
3. Communicate to the world.
Show that you are serious about your growth plans. Demonstrate how you are retooling your brand to reflect a current look at who you are. You might refresh your logo or your brand identity. Whatever you do, communicate your new brand position to both internal and external audiences.
4. Energize your employees
Your employees build your brand. Therefore, it is critical that they are in alignment with your brand. By sharing the vision, plans and direction of the company, and by training your employees to adopt the new energized culture of the company, you have a better chance for success.
5. Measure your success by evaluating the ROI.
Report the costs of branding as an investment in the company, and you can consider the returns based on the growth achieved and estimated value of the intangible asset as adding to your corporate brand.