Yesterday, I stumbled upon a great rant about the recently published Interbrand 100 top brand rankings of 2010. On his blog, Chicago based Brand Strategist Jonathan Salem Baskin suggests a far better way to value a brand, one the brand agencies are bound to hate. After sending it to my team, I decided to share the part we all found most interesting with you. Have a read, enjoy and please give us your thoughts.
I have long argued for a more operationally-focused definition of branding that would arise from business processes, not the imagination of marketers or branding gurus. Instead of trying to find indications and hints of some ethereal definition of brands, why not look at how businesses perform? Why couldn’t we define the qualities of brands through measuring outcomes, like:
- Development: Stronger brands should have an easier time identifying the products its customers want, so they should do it faster and more often.
- Efficiency: Better brands should be able to create things not just faster, but more economically than lesser-known names.
- Marketing: Awareness of a brand should make it cheaper to tell people things, so marketing expenditure should be less over time than brands that aren’t as strong.
- Efficacy: Branding should provide an umbrella that makes tactical marketing work better. The viral or direct marketing programs of strong brands should work better than others.
- Premium: Customers should be willing to pay more for brand benefits beyond functional attributes if the brand is strong, and less if it isn’t.
- Sustainability: The average percentage of customers who’ve endured a product failure, corporate crime, or other negative impact to your brand should be better than those of one lesser-known brand name in the same business category.
- Repeatability: Return business should be larger, more frequent, and more profitable for stronger brands that it is for weaker ones.
- Employees: The cost of acquiring and keeping employee talent should be less for great brands.
- Risk: Supply chains should be more secure for great brands, which means insurance exposure should be lower and expectations for reliable business performance higher.
We here at Distility violently agree. For the full post please read Jonathan Salem Baskin’s “Interbrand’s Rankings Are Nonsense.”