Integrating Winning Strategy: Business Strategy v. Brand Strategy

In Branding Evaluation by Distility2647 Comments

Distility was very fortunate to have Dean Roger Martin and Assistant Dean Suzanne Spragge of the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, spend an hour with us in the Distility Lab this week. The visit exceeded expectations since not only was it immensely gratifying to have positive feedback on Distility 1day1brand but Dean Martin also raised thought provoking questions.  Having attended his integrative thinking lecture series at Rotman and read his book The Opposable Mind, Winning Through Integrative Thinking, it should not have been a surprise that Dean Martin would zero in on thought provoking questions.  After we reviewed the Distility 1 page brand strategy model, Dean Martin asked, given our model, what did we think distinguishes “brand strategy” from “business strategy”.

Brand Strategy Model Diagram

bullet point The Distility Brand Strategy model

No surprise that the dean of integrative thinking would make us think differently about the problem we have set out to solve for our customers. After all, brand agencies, digital agencies, marketing agencies and PR agencies are now competing to solve the same problems.  This competition is causing the digital, branding, marketing and public relations worlds to converge.  However, we predict that the business strategy world may be added to this convergence.  All of these industries seek to address the same business goal: how do I reach my target customers in a winning way.

The essence of business strategy is knowing where you will play and how you will win. Brand strategy covers much of the same ground. Both are about targeting the right customer, understanding their problems and need, resolving your customers problem and need in a valuable way, and creating and defending your market position. With brand strategy, you chose to play in the customer’s mind, and you win with brand systems and campaigns that keep your brand at the top of the customer’s mind.