The Components of a Brand.
Forget the common misconception that a brand is just your logo, tagline and promotional literature.
A strong brand must integrate essential multiple components that embrace customer interactions, employee communications, corporate philosophy and the traditional advertising and marketing efforts. A brand extends through your employees, customers, the media and even the general public.
If any one of these components does not consistently reinforce your brand, you customers will become dissatisfied. The impact of their negative perception could be magnified it they decide to voice their opinions to other potential customers - or worse, the media. This will quickly erode your brand equity which could lead other prospective customers, employees and investors to ignore your company - rendering it irrelevant.
Benefits of developing brands will attract new customers which will directly lead to an increase in sales. The virtuous circle will continue as you will be in a far better position to attract and retain the best employees. Third parties will wish to associate themselves with you by establishing strategic partnerships which could attract investors who view your business and its brand equity as a valuable commodity.
In building brand a brand standard guide should be developed. The manual should address intent of the brand as well as instructions on using the brand elements - name, logo, tagline, color palette, type styles, sizes, textures, terminology and any other attributes considered central to the brand. This will primarily set the standards which will enable to develop the Brand. In branding, consistency can, and probably should, come from a brand standards guide so everyone, including the maverick running the Tucson branch, will be able to execute the brand consistently.
Management accountants—also called cost, managerial, industrial, corporate, or private accountants—record and analyze the financial information of the companies for which they work. Among their other responsibilities are budgeting, performance evaluation, cost management, and asset management. Usually, management accountants are part of executive teams involved in strategic planning or the development of new products. They analyze and interpret the financial information that corporate executives need in order to make sound business decisions. They also prepare financial reports for other groups, including stockholders, creditors, regulatory agencies, and tax authorities. Within accounting departments, management accountants may work in various areas, including financial analysis, planning and budgeting, and cost accounting.
So when we perform and hold a key position in a management then we should focus on developing our brand using our capabilities. The more value we add to our profession the more recognition we will get from the World. So at first we should know the keys which leads to brand creation.
The key principles of Brand.
The key principles that an professional must follow in order to create a strong brand through its activities can be summarized as follows:
1. Emphasize freedom not control
Effective brand management
requires the organization to agree to a set of firm principles its true, but beyond that, the staff need to be trusted to get things done.
2. Know your customers
* How well do you know your customers?
* Why do they buy from you?
* What do they want from you?
Research your customers and find out the answers to key questions like these. Get to know the dynamics of your customers inside out, only then can your marketing be successfully tuned in to their needs.
3. Find your customers
You will need to find out the best way to reach your potential customers. When producing marketing campaigns we carefully research the best route to the market to achieve the objective
Organizations who succeed in delivering strong brands, tend to roll back the frontiers of head office.
5. Do things differently
Emphasize uniquely owned processes and practices rather than generic best practices.
6. Spread the Brand
Communicate your own brand positioning to your own people before you communicate it to your customers
This entails building a deep intuitive understanding of the brand among organization’s own employees before communicating the brand promise to consumers.
7 Have a clear vision
Know where you want your brand to be in 5 years time. It takes many years to build a successful brand so have a clear objective in mind. When working with clients we like to know what the long term objective of the company is. Only then can we recommend marketing plans and campaigns that will successfully achieve this
8. Stand out from the crowd
Identify what values your brand has or should have. To stand out from the competition your brand needs to have a clear message as to what it stands for. For example is your brand a premium priced one built on quality and expertise or do you stand for value and service. When building a new brand we look at every aspect of the clients brand value and ask staff from all areas of the company what values they think their.
9. Think long term
Great brands are built overtime. Brand building needs to be viewed as a seven to ten year planning cycle.
Measure the things that really matter to the brand and one crucial thing about measurement is what happens to the results and the extent to which they are fed back to the front line staff in a way that drives actions
Only the techniques of brand building will not be suffice in other words it remains incomplete. One must also know the process which build Brands.
1. Develop a mission statement that shows your reason for being and the value you provide to your customers
2. Diversify all marketing, PR and media to reach the markets where your clients are to be found (as opposed to marketing within your own service industry).
3. Participate (attend, speak, host, present, show) in at least two national and local industry conferences.
4. Create and issue an online or direct mail newsletter.
5. Get known for niche expertise or specific industry knowledge. (speak, write, present, teach).
14. Participate in professional internship programs.
6. Participate and sponsor local charitable efforts; get your name in the program the charitable cause distributes; get your name in the press surrounding the event.
7. Get to know all potential teaming partners in your new geographic area. Let them know your people, your areas of expertise and potential for cross referrals.
8. Develop collateral material with a regional bent; think what projects, services, people or elements might be important to this new market and capture this regional tone in all collateral material.
9. Develop tip sheets as to how your company is different than your competitors and why this makes a difference to teaming partners and to your end users-your potential clients. Include these differentiating tips as the basis for all your branding statements.
10. Develop a calendar of local and regional events in your locale and make your company visible in the areas most related to your company and your potential clients' interests.
11. Post your calendar of appearances and participation on your website.
12. Plan a media release before and after each event.
13. Hire an industry professional to conduct a survey on your behalf; post the results on your website. Publicize the results most important to your industry.
14. Update your website to be informational based so that search engines can find you, and clients can read in-depth material demonstrating your expertise.
15. Add informational website content a minimum of four times per month.
16.Establish your brand by regularly updating the financial value or potential value associated with your brand. Quantify results achieved and add these results to your brand value. Communicate through all methods, the value of your brand to those associated with it.
Holding the brand.
In the above two segments we learnt regarding the key principles of branding and The process to build the brand. An another crucial factor is to maintain the brand .It can also be defined that how one can hold the brand in the long term journey of his profession. A strong brand is invaluable as the battle for customers intensifies day by day. It's important to spend time investing in researching, defining, and building your brand. After all your brand is the source of a promise to your consumer. It's a foundational piece in your marketing communication and one you do not want to be without.
Key principles to hold your Brand.
1. Outside Help. Seek objective, outside professional help. If you do it yourself, you will likely take your eye off the day to day running of the business, cause unnecessary anxiety, and either keep your business where it is or hurt it further.
2. Rethink Your Business. Think about current customers, competition, industry changes, and technology. Even rethink the type of business you are in. Many successful businesses have managed to stay that way by moving with the times. They saw the needs of their customers changing and acted accordingly.
3. Assess Your Company's Current Status. Put everything on the table, both good and bad. Include aspects of the business you are proud of and issues you wish would just go away. Address issues relating to staff, products and services, location, profitability and new business development.
4. Keep Some Change Some. Determine what your customers like about you and what they would like to see changed. Be honest with yourself.
5. Maintain A Level Of Objectivity. Emotion has no place in this process. To achieve a successful marketing turnaround, you must do what is best for your company. This may mean letting long-term employees go or finding new suppliers.
6. Review The Past. Look carefully at your past marketing efforts. Examine past successes and failures. If you are still running a marketing program, but cannot justify the expense with an accurate accounting of incremental sales, consider canceling the program or placing it on hold. Successful marketing turnarounds stop the bleeding quickly.
7. Review Competitive Activity. Often, a new entry in a market will utilize new marketing techniques and new thinking to achieve sales that you didn't know were possible.
8. Look At The Staff. Take time to review existing staff in light of the plans you are preparing and the growth you seek. Many companies that have set out on a path for success have been thwarted by staff members who didn't agree with the new ways, or were actually afraid that the company would succeed. The last person you expect to come forward will be the first to say goodbye. People can be resistant to change. They like things to stay the way they are. If you need new people, clearly identify the skills required and begin the hiring process immediately.
9. Flexibility. Be flexible, and prepared to adjust your marketing plan as new opportunities and challenges arise.
10. Persevere. Perseverance is an absolute must. If you give up too early, you may fall short of the great success for which your business was destined.
11. Be Quick. Speed is essential in turning a company around. While you were planning and executing the marketing efforts your competitors may have been taking advantage of the opportunity and moving in on your customers.
The Above mentioned features can also be called as The process of Brand Management.
We cost accountants need to develop this Brand value since it a part of professional. If one is not a good professional then he cannot create a brand. Brand can also be called as a goodwill for a professional. If the goodwill of an professional is not up to the mark then he will spoil not only his own position but also raises a question on other professional. We can work hard, follow the principles of ethics, becomes very focused but if he cannot build a brand through his capabilities which will give him a recognition to his profession. Those who are in service their also individual brand plays a key role. In other words it can be called as corporate responsibility is where brand management and corporate strategy cross-over each other, and become indistinguishable.
Corporate responsibility refers to a corporate strategy that asserts that financial performance is connected in today’s global world to responsible business practices that address the impact of business on society and the environment. Thus, in socially responsible businesses, business decisions are connected to their ethical, social, and environmental impacts. In this sense corporate social responsibility, is the sine qua non of brand strategies, and the brand strategy
We Cost Accountant plays a vital role in corporate social responsibility (CSR), also known as sustainable development, as an area in which their expertise on risk, control, and governance can boost the public’s confidence and trust in their organization. If the quality of the auditing standards and principles and moreover the ethical principles comes to such levels then from where the corporate social responsibility will be achieved.
"Loved reading this piece by Indraneel Sen Gupta
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