Ask a SMB (small or mid-size business) owner “What do you want consumers to think or feel about your product as a result of using it?” Brand-centric marketers might call this the “net take-away.” The usual answer will be some contorted, ramble of about 45 seconds, with an occasional heavenward look and a smile. If a brand planner asks the question the smile is apt to be more self-conscious.
The point of the exercise is to see if the product’s value proposition is refined. Not raw. Not piecemeal. Not at all fickle.
If a business owner can’t settle on a good description of his/her business or product, then that owner needs a brand assist. If they can’t agree on a fairly static brand value statement, something is not fully baked. And usually it’s not the product, it’s the owner.
It is the job of the brand planner to extract the brand value statement that gives comfort to the business owner. One that through a claim and proof array, creates an organizing principle for product, experience and messaging.
Some think brand strategy is not product strategy. It is. Many are not aware that brand strategy is about the retail or service experience. It is. Yet everyone will agree messaging is the brand strategy reason-for-being. And it’s this latter, singular view that most hurts brands. Brands planners are not in the advertising and sign business.
McPeace. (Not autofill for make peace.)