Market forces are changing. Fast. Everything is under attack, and classic business models are up for grabs – and destruction. If your organization is running on a business model that has not changed much for the past decade or more, chances are that disruption is coming.
We live in an age of change, and change is good. But change is also difficult, and bumpy, and surprisingly hard to implement. Especially when organizations are unsure of what to change, and what their own potential and abilities actually are.
Why a brand audit?
Far too many companies in today’s business sphere operate on old knowledge, and quantitative market insight alone. In our fast-paced society, it is easy to become short sighted, and go for the quick wins. And sure, we like quick wins – everybody does – but how does a quick win alter your long-term strategy, your brand equity, and the general position of your offering?
This is why an in-depth analysis (brand audit) of your organization – your brand – is a critical tool for change. Also for establishing an updated, qualitative, fact-based foundation for further strategic endeavours. Now, as promised, five pointers to stay ahead of the curve through brand insight:
1 – Know your brand position
Your brand position is a crucial part of who you are, what you do, and how you attract customers, talent, and generally – attention. It also plays a huge role in terms of how your brand is perceived, internally and externally. Qualitative brand insight will give you the real information of where you are today, and where you want to be in the future. As well as how to reach your desired positioning.
2 – Understand perception and equity
Understanding how your audiences look at your offering, and what they associate with your brand is critical. As is understanding why they chose, or not chose, to be a part of what you have to offer them. Establishing your brand equity beyond financial numbers and sales budgets creates a window of opportunity, both internally and externally. What are the actual drivers that drive behaviour and loyalty?
3 – Uncover beliefs, belonging and purpose
Your organization is a tribe. And tribes have a sense of belonging, a form of togetherness. A brand audit will uncover the way your tribe works, what it misses, what it needs, and how it can perform at its best. People in today’s world need a purpose, and a clear vision of why they are getting up in the morning. For this to work in your organization’s favour, you need to know the lay of the land – how your leaders are perceived, and if and how people connect with your brand.
4 – Identify, manage and close the strategic gaps between your organization and its customers
Mainly, a brand audit will uncover the clear gaps between your brand / offering and your customer’s expectations and needs. Delivering a product or service to your customers that does not align with their desires and expectations is a costly mistake. And so is running a company without a clear understanding of the link between core strategy and customer experience. Identifying these gaps will create a basis for developing an organization to its most optimal level. An organization that thrives on great customer and employee experiences, that constantly raises the bar, creates benchmarks and delivers on its vision and purpose.
5 – Establish a fact-based leadership tool
C-level research shows that one of the most common grievances of top management is that decisions are often made based on the gut feeling of one or more individuals. As a director or CEO, having an updated brand audit will enable high level, quick decision making, and reduce the amount of misjudged strategic decisions on any level.
In short, this is it:
Welcome to your project.