One of my brand planning memes is the definition of brand strategy: “An organizing principle for product, experience and messaging.” I was working on a readout for a specialty pharmacy company using this definition when it dawned on me that maybe it’s time to subjugate “messaging” by surrounding it with parentheses.
Even though messaging is what most people are concerned with when thinking about brand strategy, I’m having second thoughts. It is where a lot of the marketing budget goes, especially for companies with out-sized advertising budgets — but I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s really secondary to “product” and “experience.”
Get the organizing principle right for product and the experience and it’s going to be hard to get the “message” wrong. And advertising messaging should never, ever be the tail that wags the dog.