Most of us believe in “annual check-ups”. We visit our Docs for annual check–ups. We have our cars serviced every 10,000 miles. We’re on tilt, but we pause for these check-ups. After all, early detection can be life-saving.
What about our Brands? Do we step back from daily fires to systematically assess their Health? In “The Brand Report Card” (HBR), Tuck Professor Keller suggests tools/approaches to ensure a good long-term prognosis:
- Brand Report Card: Grade across 10 indicators (e.g. – Consistency, Sensible Hierarchy, Relevance).
- Brand Inventory: “A look in the mirror… [at] the stuff you send out into the world” – C. Grams, Former Red Hat Exec (see photo); Consider full spectrum of what consumer’s see/experience.
- Brand Exploratory: Wide net immersion in consumers’ Brand associations
Regardless of what you call them (Check Ups, Health Checks, Audits), these “step backs” can be lifesaving for your Brand. A few suggestions for great outcomes:
- Focus on long-term Brand Health using agreed criteria and metrics. Having an actionable segmentation and clear target is critical. But how do we know if our segmentation and target are good enough?
- Focus on discovery and dialogue, not scores.
- Have a meeting to create a date with destiny that elevates focus on this “important, not urgent” work. Meeting ≠ Dog + Pony Show.
- Leverage diversity of perspectives to drive objectivity and alignment. Include Top Execs, Functional Leaders, Agency and Regional leaders, internal/external objective experts.
- Timing Matters. Schedule to maximize actionability.
Little to lose. Much to gain. Why not do Brand Check Ups?