How to Craft Your Brand's Vision
Creating a vision for the brand is the most important primary step in the brand management process. Brand Vision can be defined as the long term strategic position that the brand will take in the market as well as in the consumer mind-space. Brand vision offers a strategic intent which will act as a long term goal for the brand.
Creating brand vision is a strategic process which requires the involvement of top management. The vision dictates the future course of action for the brand with regard to its growth and future course of action.
Most of the time marketers are faced with critical decisions regarding the future growth path for the brand. There is a dilemma whether the brand should be extended to cater to new opportunities in the market or to be focused on the current category. Some times marketers tend to extend the brand too much that the entire brand equity gets diluted. Without the guidance of a clear vision, brands tend to lose focus and extend into unchartered unrelated categories. Lack of vision also creates the problem of discontinuity for the brand’s strategies. There are chances that the brand compromises its equity for the sake of short-term growth unless guided by a long-term vision.
Having a brand vision will help marketers make decisions regarding the growth of the brand. The vision also helps marketers to tap into opportunities which are in line with the vision and reject others that contradict the vision. Vision helps the brand to create a brand charter which will act as a rule book for the managers. It will also help the managers to shape the brand strategies during the time of crisis.
Brand vision also helps to develop consistency with regard to brand communication. The messages derived from the brand vision will be consistent across all media. Even when the advertising & creative agencies change, the brand message will remain constant. In the absence of brand vision, the communication messages will not be connected by a common thread.
Brand vision also motivates the employees to perform better. Employees feel motivated and inspired when they are aware of the brand vision. More importantly, employees should feel that they are contributing to the realization of that vision.
Typically brand vision statements should be simple and easy to remember. The golden rule is that every employee should be able to remember the brand vision especially in the case of a corporate brand or service brand.
While drafting the brand vision, the marketers has to keep the following facts into mind
While drafting a brand vision, marketers need to have big plans for the brand. The vision should not restrict to the category or even the industry. Instead the brand vision should aim at addressing some critical issues faced by the consumer. The vision should inspire both the consumers and employees alike.
Brand vision should encourage the growth of the brand beyond product categories. The marketers should be looking at a 10 year time horizon while drafting the brand vision. The marketers should be asking the following questions while drafting the vision.
- In 10 years, what will be the position of the brand in the industry/category?
- What is the core need that this brand is going to satisfy?
- Is that need sustainable over a period of time?
- What needs do this brand satisfy in future?
- Will the vision of the brand appeal to the consumers?
- Does the brand vision excite the employees?
- Does the vision encourage growth and pursuit of opportunities?
- Is the vision easy to understand and communicate?
It is important for the brand to maintain synergy with the corporate strategy. That is why the top management should play a key role to in drafting the vision. When the brand’s vision is aligned with corporate vision, a sustained investment and support can be ensured for the brand’s growth.
Brand visions should be created with customer as the focal point. Many a time brands focus too much on the product rather than the customer need. Having a strong focus on customer will help brands to create visions which are practical. Customers will also be able to relate to the brand vision since the vision is created with the customer in mind.
Although brand vision is crafted for a long term, it is important for the marketers to revise the vision from time to time. Brands operate in a dynamic environment. There are chances that the brand’s vision may become irrelevant for the consumers in the changed environment. Hence visions need to be revised in line with the changing consumer environment.