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Brand Strategy


This Is Not Another Blog Post: The Power of Differentiation

This Is Not Another Blog Post: The Power of Differentiation

Somewhere in a humid conference room right now, someone is adding the phrase “disrupt the status quo” to a bulleted list titled “our values.” Can you smell the whiteboard marker? Can you hear the crackled audio of the one remote employee dialing in to suggest that we “shatter the status quo,” since the word “disrupt” is so overdone? I’ve been there, you’ve been there, you might be there right now. One thing we all know deep down as we finish our third coffee of the morning: this is not how you differentiate your business, brand, or culture in a meaningful way. You can’t just say, “I’m not...
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How to Hire the Right Branding Agency

How to Hire the Right Branding Agency

The Business Case for Hiring a Branding Agency In all the years of working with tech companies, we have heard the same story time and time again about the trials and tribulations of VPs and marketing executives trying to secure a budget to invest in hiring a branding agency with limited success. On top of that, how to hire the right agency can be just as confusing. We hear about them making strong and compelling business cases to invest in the brand to leadership teams and hitting a wall. It happens at every budget cycle, management meeting, and discussion around disappointment in growth,...
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Bridging the False Divide Between B2B and B2C

Bridging the False Divide Between B2B and B2C

Business is made of people trying to sell each other things. That’s it. And yet, there is still this massive gulf between business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C). You feel it immediately in the design and language used. You don’t need a branding vocabulary to know when you’re seeing a B2B ad, because it will probably feature code, a weird bar chart, and copy like, “Adding code coverage with Slather to Zendesk’s iOS SDK build.” Here’s what I want to know: high-level B2B decision-makers are still people – people with hearts, minds, and feelings who make decisions based on...
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Unifying Vision, Mission, Strategy, Brand, and Culture

Unifying Vision, Mission, Strategy, Brand, and Culture

It’s very difficult to work hard when you don’t understand what you’re working toward. We’re all capable of putting our heads down and grinding it out – but that behavior generally leads to burnout, apathy, and updating your LinkedIn. A recent study from Reward Gateway, a global employee engagement company, which surveyed 1,500 workers and 750 senior decision-makers across the U.K., U.S., and Australia has revealed that only 25% of employees feel completely informed about their employer’s corporate mission and only 32% of employees feel completely informed about the values of the...
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Brand, Purpose, Culture: The Triple Threat For Business Right Now

Brand, Purpose, Culture: The Triple Threat For Business Right Now

In Tandem We talk a lot about how businesses today need a strong brand, a clear purpose, and an inspired culture. Each of these brand components are playing a greater role in business success today. Sometimes it appears that if you just have one, you might be able to turn your business around. But this is no longer the case. Without all three – brand, purpose, culture – working together and driving one another, rising to the top is not a possibility. Simply embracing purpose is no longer enough to stand out. Even the most talented people aren’t going to drive you into the future without a...
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Brand Essence Is the Heart and Soul of Your Business

Brand Essence Is the Heart and Soul of Your Business

The Miracle of Brand Essence To begin, we turn briefly to the world of basketball. The Los Angeles Lakers, a once-beloved franchise, have not won a championship in nearly a decade. This year, they will not make the playoffs for the sixth year in a row, the longest drought in team history. Yet despite this, every year, the Lakers sell more jerseys than just about anybody else in the league. How is this possible? Even though the team is weak, its brand essence is incredibly strong. If branding is the heart of business, then brand essence is the heart of branding. Think of it as a tool, often...
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How to Successfully Emerge from Stealth Mode

How to Successfully Emerge from Stealth Mode

Can You Keep a Secret? Stealth mode is a business strategy in which your product, service, or entire brand is intentionally hidden from the market until a predefined date. It is the fine art of keeping a secret, especially in highly competitive markets. And in many ways, it goes against every piece of advice entrepreneurs normally give. Educating your users, generating feedback, building product love, cultivating a community – these are all best practices that require some element of exposure. How can people fall in love with your brand if they can’t see it? But under the right conditions,...
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How to Launch a New Brand Category

How to Launch a New Brand Category

Launching A New Brand Category The decision to join an existing category, or to launch a new brand category is not an easy decision. Evaluating your product maturity, the product roadmap, and overall market maturity is critical. Once the decision is made, the strategy shifts to creating the right budget and plan to launch the new brand category. Building momentum is paramount to both the category’s success, and by proxy, your own brand’s position as the category leader. As we’ve previously discussed, timing is critical for launch. You need to consider factors of competition, messaging,...
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What Is a Brand Idea?

What Is a Brand Idea?

How do people make business decisions? Whether you’re debating a specific word choice or overhauling an entire brand, there’s always a tension between the rational and emotional, the aesthetic and strategic. It’s easy to have a gut instinct over the things that inflame your curiosity, but what about the minuscule? As decision fatigue sets in, how do you ensure your choices are aligned, consistent, and ultimately laddering up to something greater than the sum of its parts? This is where the concept of brand idea shines. A brand idea is an essence or embodiment of what you stand for. Think of...
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Why Brand Positioning is Critical to Sustained Growth

Why Brand Positioning is Critical to Sustained Growth

The Power of Brand Positioning Strong brand positioning has a great impact on the success of your business. But many high-growth companies struggle with how best to position themselves and communicate why they matter. Getting this right is hard, but critical. And if you fail at this, your customers won’t know whether to buy from you or your competitors. In short, positioning is the process of distinguishing your brand from your competitors in meaningful ways. It’s about what you offer, what value you deliver, and what place you hold in your target audience’s mind. Defining...
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