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Rockefeller Habits by Verne Harnish
January 31, 2017
A question we often get before starting one of our Shaker Sessions is; what is a brand strategy? By definition, a brand strategy is a long-term plan for the development of a successful brand in order to achieve specific goals. In this article we elaborate on our definition of a brand strategy and how the Brand Development Canvas can help you find an answer to the question what is a brand strategy.
First, let's clear up the biggest misconception about brand strategy: A brand is much more than just your company name, logo and marketing activities. In fact, your brand is much more than that -- it's the stuff that feels intangible. To discover and develop your brand, Nieuw Creatief Peil invented the Brand Development Canvas. It is build up around 10 essential brand building blocks, divided over three main pillars.

The internal perspective

A strong brand is build from within. Your marketing- and sales efforts should represent what you believe in, which is exactly what we focus on with the internal perspective. On the far left side of the canvas the three brand building blocks represent your core values, mission and vision.
To discover them it is essential to dig deep into the organization or reflect on your personal believes when you’re a start-up. Especially with your core values you need to go beyond the obvious. Is “quality” really a core value or do you strive for “excellent product finishing”. Where the vision is clearly defined and embodies the ultimate goal of your brand, the mission can be more woolly and explains the reason of your organization’s existence (as seen left at the mission of NIKE).
The internal perspective will be completed with two more practical brand building blocks, strengths and room for improvement. What are you really good at and where do you need to be forethoughtful about. Once you have listed the most important strengths and chances, the internal perspective of your brand is complete and you can move on to the right side.

The external perspective

The internal perspective focuses on what you stand for and are good at. On the right side of the Brand Development Canvas we focus on the environment you are active in. We begin with defining our customer segments, followed by creating semi-fictional representations of our ideal customer: the buyer personas. The far right side will be concluded by writing down how you can make your personas successful in what they do.
Knowing who you want to reach is step 1, how you are going to do that is step 2. Most important is to activate the channels where your personas actually are present. Spreading your message there where your future clients don’t hear you, is not that useful. To help you with that, you can define touch points: the specific moments you are in contact with your customer during their buyer journey.

The brand development heart

In the middle of the canvas we bring together best of both worlds and combine the internal and external perspective in your Brand Promise. Your Brand Promise can be seen as your unique value proposition, written down in one sentence. The primary reason why your future customers should buy from you. The Brand Goals are the marketing and sales related targets that will strengthen and boost your brand development.
Download the Brand Development Canvas to start mapping out your brand building blocks and begin developing a strong brand! Did you already get started and need some help to get further? Request a free consult on the Brand Development Canvas.