Clients are asking me a lot of questions lately about branding – both organizational branding and personal branding. Here is a templated version of my Brand Brief – the questions I cover with clients when we undertake a branding exercise. These conversations should range deep and into the farthest nooks of your goals. You don’t need to answer them all, but having written answers to most of these questions will equip you with an invaluable roadmap for future navigation of strategy, brand, marketing, and much more. Call or email me anytime to discuss the questions or your answers!
Where are we now?
- What problem/injustice does your brand/product address? What cause does your brand/product champion?
- What are some of the things folks believe about this problem/injustice?
- What are the emotions felt by folks who are suffering from this problem/injustice?
- What emotions do your customers say they feel toward your brand/product?
- What does this brand/product promise its fans?
- Describe current customers. Describe your best 10% of customers. How are they different from the other 90%?
The Big Conversation
- Where do your current customers go for information about this promise/problem/cause? Friends/Families? Who are the offline experts/authorities? Online experts/authorities?
- Where do people convene, when they want to discuss this promise/problem/cause? Can you become the convener?
- Who else is offering a promise/solution/movement in this area? Can you partner with them for mutual benefit? Are you competitors?
- Does your brand/product currently contribute to this problem/cause? How would you characterize your contribution? Your voice? Do others know your values/aspirations/emotions? Do they know your history?
What do we want to achieve?
- What opportunities exist for you to offer more value to these current customers?
- Is there anything we should avoid when talking to current customers?
- Do you want to attract new customers? How are they like current customers? Are there prospective new customers who are different from your current customers? What are they like? Is there anything we should avoid when talking with prospective new customers?
The Idea Worth Sharing
- What can we do to encourage your best customers to recommend your brand/product to their families/friends/acquaintances? How do we want them to feel when they do it?
- What are the rational and emotional reasons for them to believe what we say, and to do what we ask?
- How many touchpoints with the brand/product can we create or facilitate?
- Is there one main reason why prospective customers act – or fail to?
- What can we do that will get everyone in this area talking about your brand/product? Is there an environment/are there tools we should create that will make their conversation easier/more useful to those engaged in the conversation?
- Can your brand/product be seen as the champion for a meaningful cause?
- One sentence: What’s the most persuasive or most important thing we can say to describe the value your product/service contributes to the cause? (Avoid generalities, because they lead to ambiguous communications.) If they asked you to prove it, how would you do that?