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Forward. Backward. Standing Still.

Which Direction Is Your Brand Moving You?

Brands move people, so consequently brands move organizations. It’s not theory… it’s fact. One thing about the DC team that is a real strength is that we study brands. Good ones, great ones, and even a few not-so-great ones. Through our brand study, it’s easy to see brands that are moving forward versus those that are not. Every brand moves… the question is “in which direction?”

A good illustration of brand movement would be some of our established corporate brands. We could give countless illustrations of great brands facing challenges or opportunity, moving forward, backward or just simply stuck.

1.Under Armour’s Fast Forward. Under Armour’s innovation and creativity allowed them to rapidly surge ahead of established brands such as Nike and Adidas in the athletic apparel space.

2. Walmart Slipping Backward. Walmart’s brand supremacy was threatened and consequently lowered by the more fashion oriented and creative approach of Target.

3. McDonald’s Fear of Standing Still. McDonald’s understands that complacency often equates to failure.  This realization is causing leadership to creatively consider what the future McDonald’s experience might look like. (Look for bold changes ahead in the McDonald’s you always knew.)

4. Starbucks… Forward. Backward. Forward Again. Starbucks’ rise as a global phenomenon, its dramatic downturn, and then its sudden resurgence as a very strong and highly relevant brand provides an amazing brand journey and success story.

A company’s ability to innovate, meet client expectations, connect their story, expand their reach, grow their leadership all factor into which direction the brand will move. We’ve found the brand “movement illustration” scales down to the local church, k-12, college, non-profit, and small business levels. Organizations face challenges and changes (and even economic earthquakes) that impact their brand’s direction. It’s a simple reality. It’s how an organization responds to these directional changes that matter most.

Corporate America is constantly investing in the health, direction, and well being of its brand. It realizes the brand has followers and needs new followers. Vital brands are always moving. A stagnant or backward-moving brand represents problems and missed opportunity. As communicators and leaders, we must have a clear understanding that investing in the brand creates positive movement, which in turn moves you forward into the future with promise.

So what direction is your brand moving? Forward? Sideways? Standstill? Backwards?

How are you investing in your brand to keep it moving forward?

Are you willing to make changes to get your brand moving in the right direction?

 

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