Guest post by Vlad Vidaeff, AMA Houston President-Elect
As a brand guardian, you have dedicated yourself to protecting your company’s brand by wielding the three branding swords: brand voice, brand assets, and brand values. This is a duty given to marketing professionals who have gained years of experience in brand management. Let’s imagine that you’ve joined a new company. Let’s also assume that branding is not an area of expertise for most in the company—including senior management. How do you ensure that your brand receives the respect and integration it deserves, company-wide? Let’s begin our training.
Establish the Foundation
One of the beauties of working for an organization is the wide breadth of skill sets and strengths that your coworkers bring to the table. If we all had the same strengths and weaknesses, the business would fail quite quickly. Depending on the size of your company, you may have a sizable chunk of your company that works outside of marketing. How do you reinforce the importance of brand guardianship to an audience that may not understand much when it comes to marketing? First, by setting the foundation.
Brand management, in a sense, is all about the long-term. Forgetting about your brand principles can lead to some short-term gains in some situations. But it will always come back to haunt you. Educate your coworkers by showing them what your audience cares about. What are their desires, pain points, and interests? Any time you can bring in numbers, whether through surveys you’ve conducted or focus groups, for example, you will only bolster your points. Reinforcement is key.
Create a Presentation
Reinforcement verbally makes an impact. However, crystallizing the importance of brand guardianship with clear examples and convincing language is just as important. Develop a presentation which is digestible and compelling. Explain what the three branding swords are and why they’re important. Put into perspective why it all matters—especially on the bottom line. Nothing speaks to the C-suite more than numbers. Set some time aside where you can present everything to key stakeholders and save some time for questions. They will appreciate your efforts.
Wielding all three branding swords simultaneously takes expertise and grace. Three swords at once, in harmony, is no small feat. When solemnly taking your oath as a brand guardian, at times, you may face resistance. A lack of understanding. That is normal and do not let it sway you from your principles. Stay passionate and advocate for the importance of effective brand management. Your efforts will pay off in the long-term and make a significant impact on the effectiveness of your company’s marketing campaigns.
Wielding the three branding swords is not always a solo pursuit. Depending on the size of your marketing department, you may have some fellow warriors by your side. As a brand guardian, you have an honorable duty that you will embrace for many years to come. On to the battlefield!
Vlad Vidaeff serves on the board of AMA Houston as the president-elect. As a content creator, strategist, and leader, he specializes in areas of digital marketing including social media, email marketing, blogs, brand management, and web copy. With experience on both the agency and client side, Vlad has collaborated with companies in industries such as real estate, healthcare, retail, e-commerce, non-profit, hospitality, and professional services. He is an avid sports fan, a movie junkie, and a frequent live music goer.