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Creating Brand Value: Innovate, Don’t Imitate

Managing the corporate brand value is one of the most important and difficult tasks for most marketing executives. The value of the corporate brand is one of the most mysterious and indefinable assets for most companies, yet tremendous energy goes into preserving and increasing that value.

I’ve always loved compact yet profound observations, especially in business. This comment from Jeff Bezos was the inspiration for a recent talk I prepared around brand value, “Your brand is what other people say about you when you aren’t in the room.”

The presentation focused on drawing parallels between corporate brand assets and personal brand.  Leading into the week prior to the conference, some major brands like United Airlines and even American Airlines had taken major thrashings in the media – all related to one employee’s off-brand behavior.

In describing brand value one of the major themes of the discussion was around passion. Great brands commit and stay committed to their passion.  I love the example of how Facebook remains passionate about building a social infrastructure to connect the entire world. They have spent more than $1 billion dollars to try to provide “this fundamental human right. “  At every level – personal, product, or corporate brand – what is your brand’s passion?

When you think of how your brand value relates to others (after all, it’s what they say about you when you aren’t in the room) the words authentic and relatable are key. Burt’s Bees and Patagonia are brands that feel like they genuinely care about the social well-being of the earth. No matter how much BP or Volvo spend their marketing dollars on sustainability initiatives, it would be difficult for many of us to consider their brand is authentically admirable in their pursuit of social responsibility.

The last aspect of brand value that we discussed was the concept of individualism. When your brand is built around your passion and it is distinctly unique from others an intangible value is created for your company. The most valuable brands don’t imitate they innovate. That’s why first-to-market innovative technology companies like Google and Apple command such a high brand value.

At Clarkston Consulting, our vision is to be the most effective and highly sought after integrator of business solutions for our core clients, promoting business growth and market diversification, while providing a rewarding and stimulating environment for our stewards. Our passion is around caring for our clients and our people.

Every day the leadership team strives to incorporate this vision and the core values of our company to create intangible brand value in the markets we serve. This vision of being highly sought after by our core clients is the reason we are extremely proud of our client referrals and happy to announce the 2016 results of our annual client satisfaction survey. In 2016, we achieved an industry leading 96% client satisfaction.  This annual survey was taken by an independent third party who captured what our clients say about us when we aren’t in the room and we could not be prouder.

 

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