Brand is not about consensus building
Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
30 October 2013
Internal consensus building just leads to more of the same
At Stealing Share, we believe there is a fundamental tenet in branding that should guide everything a brand stands for: The price of clarity is the risk of offense.
The meaning of that is simple. To be a true choice, you must put a stake in the ground about how you are for. You cannot be for everyone, because then you are really for nobody.
“What narrow focus gives you is preference. What preference gives you is margin. When a brand is positioned to be for everyone, there becomes no reason to prefer it.”
That strategy often scares the hell out of companies because many tend to look perform internal consensus building or make choices that cause the least amount of pushback from internal audiences.
The results are evident in many brands, both large and small but you wouldn’t think it would be that way. There is a great deal of parity between products and services so it would seem logical that brand positions would be more focused. As more players complete in a market, the piece of the pie for any one player becomes smaller and, therefore, brands become more defined.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the case with many brands.
What narrow focus gives you is preference. What preference gives you is margin. When a brand is positioned to be for everyone, there becomes no reason to prefer it. After all, a consumer could switch to another brand that promised the same kind of vanilla.
At its root, many vanilla brands are actually the result of organizational politics. There is greater worry about what internal audiences think than what prompts outside audiences to prefer the brand.
Consensus building is all fine and good, but the goal of a brand should be to grow market share and preference, not make your co-workers all agree with each other.
Too much customer service Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 21 June 2018 Too much customer service is a real thing I’ve said this before, but I gotta say it again. Too much customer service drives me bat-shit crazy. Not surprisingly, Best Buy kills me with this....
Dow Jones ousts GE Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 20 June 2018 Dow Jones kicks out GE. Now what? In 1896, the stock market adds GE as one of Dow Industrial Average’s first companies. As of June 26th of this year, it will no longer be part of the DJIA. I typically...
Tim Cook is leading the way Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 19 June 2018 Apple CEO Tim Cook Tim Cook. Apple Act 2. Like everyone else, I worried about Apple’s succession plan. I was a died-in-the-wool member of the Steve Jobs cult. I was not sure what to make of...