A few weeks ago I introduced a tool called the Business Compass. This tool provides the means of visually communicating your organization’s vision, mission, values, brand promise, leadership behaviors and strategic and operational priorities. I have previously blogged about vision, mission, values and strategic and operational priorities but what about Brand Promise?
Brand Promise is simply what the company promises to the people who interact with it. Companies that are able to follow through on their brand promise, create real brand value with their customers. This brand value can be measured in a number of different ways (see the Forbes article “Worlds Most Valuable Brands – Behind the Numbers” for one example) but essentially it comes down to how well known and respected the organization is and how much revenue this notoriety brings in. Forbes also rates the Valuable Brands with Apple, Microsoft and Coca-Cola right at the top of the list for last year.
The important thing to remember is that a brand isn’t what you say it is unless your corporate actions, services and products align with the brand promise. The litmus test for this is to ask your customers. They are the ultimate judge for a brand. Ask your customers what your organization means to them and you will get a excellent picture of what your brand is outside the walls of your organization.
There is a wealth of information available in the marketplace on branding and brand promises so I won’t go into any more detail here (refer to my favorite expert, Marty Neumeier in The Brand Gap: How to Bridge the Distance Between Business Strategy and Design or just Google “Brand Promise” for more info). The only points I want to make here are;
1) Your organization must deliver on its brand promise to its customers
2) Your brand promise must align with your vision, mission and values
If you can take care of these two items, then the business compass can once again be used to very effectively communicate to your employees what the organization is all about and how they contribute to the organization’s success. Once you have your organization fully aligned around vision, mission, values, strategic and operational priorities and brand promise, you will begin to see extreme focus, higher engagement and higher productivity.