90% of brand strategies are arrowheads. They have a points, are sharp, and are usually well crafted. In most cases, brand strategies are ad agency crafted. In the agency creative process – the building of the ads – the last thing often completed is the tagline. Taglines are summations of all the creative work. In the case of Northwell Health, a huge NY area health system, the wan tagline “Look North,” is not a brand strategy. It’s a bow on the present. In the case of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, tagline “More Science. Less Fear.” is both a tagline and brand strategy. It’s provable.
Arrowheads are pretty and last a long time in the dirt as any archeologist will tell you but as a tool they are worthless without a shaft and flights (feathers providing stability.) Ever try throwing an arrowhead?
Brand strategies un-complicate complication. As an organizing principle “One claim and three proof planks” transform pages and pages of product, positioning, segmentation and experience folderol into a workable business-building system. Carrying the metaphor forward, brand strategy puts aerodynamics behind the tagline.
Look at your marketing documents and outputs and see if you can put onto paper your claim and proof array. If you can’t, you are tossing arrowheads.