What Business Ideals Mean to Branding

Each of us is different; each individual, each community, each religion, each society… Some more different than others. Some afraid of showing these differences, some who embrace them and scream from the mountaintops. These differences are the very thing that both bonds us as well as tears us apart. These differences (or similarities depending on how you look at it) generate various sub segments of individuals that form around very specific common interests, topics or ideas. In our society, there has never been a more segmented society or, in our case, marketplace.

In the business world, we’re different too. As businesses we are made up of very individuals described above. The cultural differences may collide, but these individuals have come together for a common purpose through beliefs, values and ideals. Whether this motivation is monetary, necessity, loyalty, value, or idyllic driven, the universe has brought these individuals together for a common purpose; the company. This melting pot of individuals creates a sub culture of its own; one that overlaps and transects with the other rich cultures that each individual belongs to. This raises two overlooked extremely valuable assets each company has:

1) Every company, regardless of effort has a culture; a culture which is defined by this group of individuals which are highly connected to and vested in.
2) The company culture is a summation of other, segmented cultures.

This is some pretty heavy stuff if you think about it. When companies (yours included) discusses the need for a better culture or communicating on a more in depth cultural level, we can viably say that we do have a culture; a culture that has a network of highly vested and engaged individuals in it.

But I mentioned we continually overlook these factors, which can become extremely profitable differentiators if used correctly. As you know, we as marketers or advertisers are continually asked to differentiate our companies to stand out better in the marketplace. So what do we fall back on for differentiation? The good ol’ features and benefits; ingredients and outcomes; the big shiny objects that are used to “sell” than drive loyalty and passion based on a deeper meaning. We overlook any thought of culture, emotion, and ideal mapping and base our messaging differentiation on cold, hard, emotionless features or benefits.

But this isn’t the worse thing we do. We use this lens to “sell” but we do so with a competitive viewpoint of comparison against others in the product category. So we are forcing our brand and marketing messages to compete in a commoditized world with a commoditized message around emotionless features.

If we took a look at the culture of our corporation and align the ideals and values of others in the marketplace, we could springboard our messaging into the marketplace and engage and interact based on something deeper, something with emotion, something that passions and advocacies are created around. By appealing to these deep seeded needs of the specific individuals with shared ideals, we can build a more sustainable brand that is deeply integrated into the lifestyle of our consumers; the pinnacle of any brand.

What are your differentiators?

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