Building a brand

by Leon Gettler | |   Leadership
Building a brand

The CEO is responsible for building the company brand

Brand building is the responsibility of the CEO. It’s the CEO who must deliver the message that the brand is the responsibility of every employee. Everyone in the company needs to understand the benefits of a brand as well as their individual role in bringing the brand’s promises to life. How is this best done?

According to, building a brand strategy requires the CEO to embrace the brand as a strategic asset that needs to be nurtured and built over time.

“Other members of the senior management team must in turn support that message. The CEO of 3M, for example, leads its branding efforts, supported by a brand management committee that is focused on strategy. The committee is represented by high-level, cross-functional executives, including the head of research and development, senior lawyers, and brand experts. As a result, brand involvement is extremely high throughout the organisation.”

identifies six Cs of successful brands. These are company (“The name you give your business is your branding name and it is what people will call your business.”), client (“One of the most important elements of successful branding is defining the type of clients you want to attract. Moms with toddlers or women without children? Men who like drag racing, or those who prefer quiet afternoons in nature? Find out what is important to the audience you want to attract.”), clarity (“In an age of information overload, less is most definitely more. Keep it short, keep it simple, keep it clear. Strong brands are clear about what they are, and what they are not. They understand their unique promise of value. And this promise of value sets them apart from their competitors.”), consistency (“In addition to being clear about who they are, strong brands are also consistent. They are always what they say they are. Every interaction a client has with your brand must be consistent across every marketing channel.”), credibility (“Credibility is about whether you fulfill your brand promise. Over time, a consistent and reliable brand performance builds trust, and trust leads to brand preference. Today, clients look at reviews, read in-depth information, and pay attention to word-of-mouth in order to feel confident that the purchase and post-purchase experiences will live up to the expectations raised by brand marketing campaigns. Nothing torpedoes branding efforts faster than failing to live up to marketing claims.”) and creativity (“You can’t attract a loyal following if nobody notices you. So if you are serious about developing a successful brand, your first order of business is to make sure you stick out from your competition.”).

Nick Fairburn, client services director at Factor 3, echoes this, saying it comes down to credibility, sustainability, relevance, having the power to motivate people and differentiating.

“Brands, or more accurately brand strategies, are geared to plug in to human frailties and idiosyncrasies. In truth, the most successful brands are specifically created to help consumers choose a product or service on other than rational criteria,’’ Fairburn writes. “The logo that adorns your shirt's breast pocket, the fridge door or that little leather handbag - it's all about reaffirming your personality.”

How have you gone about brand building?