The original usage of the word “brand” referred to identifying things like cattle. When cattle were grazing, ranchers needed a way to distinguish their herds from others. So they “branded” their cattle with some sort of symbol or name. This has basically two functions: it groups them and separates them.
Brands are about connection just as much as they are about separation. There is no such thing as a brand that is truly “for everyone.” In order to develop a clearly defined brand, it’s as important to know what your company will not do, what it doesn’t believe in, as it is to define your values, your mission, and your vision.
Try this simple exercise.
- List everything your brand believes
- List everything your brand is against
Be ruthless. Really get to the heart of what your brand stands for.