Are B2B corporate brands the last source of competitive advantage?
It was either Robert Kapferer or Leslie de Chernatony who said “Brand is the last remaining source of competitive advantage.” No-matter who said it, brand is becoming ever more relevant as our choice of products and services – particularly in business markets – becomes more complex.
Less about features and benefits
Corporate brands are less about features and benefits and more about things like relationships, support and reliability, a recognised culture of innovation and speed of service. These elements make up more than half of our service or product delivery and make all the difference between winning and coming second, or third, or even fourth. At its best ‘brand’ is a valuable asset providing the ultimate shortcut to a buying decision.
Strong B2B corporate brands accelerate growth
Any organisation that wishes to accelerate profitable growth and maintain a sustainable competitive advantage needs a brand strategy.
The Corporate Brand Strategy is the highest level of strategic guiding documents. A brand strategy is based on an inspirational brand ideal that defines the organisation’s purpose (its reason for being) and acknowledges the benefit it brings to the world. At its core the brand strategy answers the question: Why do we exist?
Brand Strategy should inform corporate strategy
The corporate brand strategy puts forward a range of recommendations aimed at achieving the brand vision and purpose in the world. Some call it the brand DNA.
The brand strategy aligns with and informs the: corporate strategy, competitive strategy and marketing & communications strategy.
Though, unfortunately for many of us, our greater purpose is rarely given the time or focus it deserves leaving mediocrity in strategy to flourish.