Use This Brand Pyramid Template to Create Your Company Brand
- Your corporate brand is the customers perception of your company or its products.
- Brand building shapes customer perception of your company or products to drive increased customer acquisitions, customer share and customer retention. Other goals may include increased price premiums and reduced competition.
- A brand pyramid template can be used as a framework to create an identity that reaches more prospects, converts more customers and grows company revenues.
Every company has a brand. It's developed over time either by design or happenstance.
When formed by happenstance it almost always fails to best position the company and its products for increased patronage, customer advocacy and referrals. It fails to shape customer perception and drive increased sales because it is the result of unplanned actions, inconsistent messaging and unforeseen consequences.
In contrast, a high-performance identity carefully defines, measures, and reinforces messaging that drives slated business objectives. High performance brands are intentional, proactively designed and in a constant state of awareness and improvement.
A brand pyramid template can be used to shift from an identity that is empty, soulless, without purpose and haphazard to one that resonates with customers and drives increased customer acquisitions, customer growth and customer retention.
The Brand Pyramid Template Accelerates Company Identity
A brand pyramid template is a framework that defines and designs a company or product identity that easily conveys differentiation and shapes customer perception.
It uses a visual representation that navigates from bottom to top. It defines the fundamental identity attributes to be used in marketing campaigns, sales proposals and customer communications.
The goal is to visually demonstrate the most important attributes of a brand identity. Here's how it works.
- Features are relevant and hopefully unique capabilities. They describe the purpose of the company or product, what it is designed to do and how it does it.
- Functional benefits describe the customer problem to be solved and the outcome achieved. They make it clear why a customer should want this company or product and the outcomes they should expect.
- Emotional benefits describe how customers feel when using or after using the product. They are best conveyed with customer stories and described with words such as satisfied, inspired or rewarded. They can be effectively used in B2B industries. However, brand research shows B2B buyers are less influenced by impressionistic and conceptual feelings and more persuaded by tangible and measurable benefits. Our experience is that emotional benefits are critical for B2C industries and helpful in B2B industries.
- The persona projects an embodiment or manifestation of the identity or company promise. It should be designed pursuant to the traits, behaviors, needs, and motivations of your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). It should also be built on core competencies and values important to this person. It should be embedded into everything the company does, from product design to customer service. For example, the persona of Flo from Progressive Insurance is friendly, approachable and always at the ready to deliver personal service. A persona may be based on a real or fictitious person.
- The brand idea, sometimes called the identity essence, shifts from a description to a declarative statement. It's a compelling narrative that defines the company's underlying DNA, what it stands for and why customers should care. To be effective, it must be credible and convey relevant differentiation. Only then is it worth promoting.
A Few Limitations
From my experience in working with clients I have found that the brand pyramid template doesn't force consideration of competitors which can result in an undifferentiated identity and positioning content. Without clear differentiation that matters to customers, the effort will fail to achieve its potential.
It also doesn't force outside-in thinking. That is, defining the key attributes from the customers' perspective. Defining descriptive elements is not about stating how the company feels about itself, it's about positioning how customers should feel about it.
As long as you are aware of these limitations you can proactively manage them.
Brand Pyramid Template + Strategic Messaging = a Better Together Approach
The company pyramid approach provides the overarching foundation to then create downstream messaging such as your competitive advantages, unique value proposition or even your elevator pitch or tag line.
Just as the pyramid brings structure and simplicity to a well-defined identity, a strategic communication architecture creates messaging consensus among staff. It delivers the final mile for the many types of frequent customer communications.
Both frameworks encourage on point, succinct positioning statements and answers. They avoid the all too common alternative approach of unbounded, sprawling and inconsistent messaging that fails to drive the customer perception that most drives business growth.