The Impact and Importance of a Strong Brand

What is a brand? That is a question which, on the surface, might appear to be simple enough to answer, but the more you look into it, the stranger it becomes.

Perhaps, a better question might be: why do some brands succeed whilst others fail?

Some might say, a successful brand is successful because it provides a superior product or service.

But that’s just the story we tell ourselves to justify the purchases we make. All of us post-rationalise our purchase decisions with perfectly logical facts about why one brand is superior to another.

But the truth is, brands aren’t logical. They’re illogical. They’re emotional, not rational.

Seeing a brand for the first time creates an instantaneous, emotional reaction in us. We then construct several assumptions about that company, business or product based on that initial feeling in order to contemplate whether or not we’ll make a purchase.

Why pay more for Kellogg’s cereal, when a supermarket’s own tastes practically identical but is half the price?

That’s the power of brand. All consumers, irrespective of whether they’re purchasing a car, a breakfast cereal or choosing where to get their ESG advisory services from, are susceptible to the illogical power of a well constructed brand.

Investing in your brand is a signal to your customer that you believe in yourself. It is a visible, tangible investment that a business owner makes today, because they believe in their future.

Equally, if an owner of a business doesn’t bother to invest in their brand because they have other priorities or don’t really see the point because it’s just fancy packaging and a logo, then, unconsciously, potential customers will notice that lack of self-belief. They’ll see the plain, brown cardboard box, note the cheaper price and assume the cereal inside tastes awful.

The b2b and professional services sectors are guiltier than anyone of underestimating the power of brand. There are so many poor corporate brands out there. Fifteen years ago they didn’t need to have a brand. They could just rock up to a boardroom with a PowerPoint presentation and a spreadsheet and pitch away.

Today though, companies with lacklustre and uninspiring brands don’t even make it to the boardroom, such is the pervasive nature of digital due diligence. Social media and digital research have become so prevalent to procurement today that all companies are consumer brands, even if they operate in the narrowest of b2b niches.

Every creative agency out there is focused on making consumer brands ultra-cool. At Blakeney, we’re focused on making corporate brands ultra-cool.

We’ve built a team of brand experts and creative strategists to help b2b and corporate leaders create truly differentiated, awesome brands.

Brand strategy in the corporate space is much closer to management consultancy than it is to creative design because of the level of complexity involved, the nuances of each sector and the management of reputational risk.

Making bold brand statements is relatively easy when you’re a luxury or streetwear brand. But, if your company is a b2b operating in the climate sector, financial services or professional services, how something will land in the boardroom, with the media or with political stakeholders is as important as the desire to stand out in the market.

Knowing where the corporate boundaries are and when to push them, is the raison d'être of our brand strategy team.