WHY IS A STRONG CORPORATE BRAND IMPORTANT?
A lot of businesses are good at branding their products. Everyone – from customers to stakeholders and employees – knows exactly what Alexa is and what it does. However, when it comes to their building their corporate brand, organizations are often less confident and strong.
Many firms struggle to articulate and communicate what the parent company stands for, how it should be perceived by the world and even within the company itself.
If we look at companies like Unilever, Nestlé, BMW, Volkswagen and Apple, they do a great job in nurturing not only strong product brands but also an equally strong corporate brand that help propel them to the top spot year after year.
Why is corporate branding so important for your business?
#1. It underpins your competitive advantage.
A clear corporate brand is critical in keeping a strong competitive strategy as a firm like Unilever understands.
Unilever owns over 400 brands. However, it works on a “one company” approach that centers on the Unilever corporate brand. Though each product brand is built and developed individually, it is always aligned and hinged on Unilever as an organization – its culture, values and vision.
According to its CEO Alan Jope, “In the future, every Unilever brand will be a brand with purpose.” This bold statement that aids the company to realize their vision to be the global leader in sustainable business also serves as the north star of the whole organization.
This clarifies with everyone – customers, employees and stakeholders – what Unilever stands for, not only as their individual product brands but also as an organization. This provides a direction as to what kind of products, processes and practices Unilever creates and engages with. This makes it much easier to steer the massive business in a single direction to create a bigger and more significant impact.
Ultimately, this underpins the strength and advantage of Unilever versus competition.
#2. It unifies your organization.
A unified organization is critical in achieving and maintaining success.
Everyone – employees and management – must be aligned with the firm’s vision and mission, values, culture and competencies. They need not only be on the same page but to also embody what the company stands for.
Dyson, as a company, believes that there is always a better way. Hence, it is the company’s DNA to question the status quo and push the boundaries. James Dyson is an engineer who was relentless in perfecting the vacuum cleaner. His obsession in solving problems and tackling inefficiencies is extended to the organization. Hence, everyone in Dyson – from customer service to finance – is encouraged to think like an engineer. That they take things apart and put them together again, better.
This provides clear direction for every member of the organization. And when everyone is on board, it is much easier to successfully steer the business.
#3. It builds and strengthens your image.
A strong, solid corporate brand fosters credibility and trust. It is important for a company to work on how it wants to be perceived by the world – its value proposition, positioning and what it stands for.
For generations, General Electric Company is all about “innovation for better living”. Even with its diverse portfolio of products and services, it is clear for customers what GE is all about. Whether it is with a GE light bulb, aircraft engine, plant solution or healthcare equipment, everyone is confident that GE is “making life better”.
A strong corporate brand is more than just a logo and some catchy tagline. Developing a comprehensive corporate brand takes time and requires commitment from stakeholders throughout the organization. It may be a slow-burn investment; however, it is necessary should you want to sustain your business. Because a strong corporate brand, ultimately, builds confidence not only within your organization butt also among customers which would impact your bottom line and provide you with a competitive advantage.
THEKRE8TIV BRAND STUDIO is a full-service agency that helps build your brand and accelerate the growth of your business. Our team has done corporate branding work for different global and local companies. Aside from leading THEKRE8TIV, Andrea also instigates the #brandovercoffee conversations on Instagram where she helps individuals and businesses with their brand questions. Follow her at @andreaa.ferri.