We have reached the top of the triangle! Over the course of the last few tutorials, I have given my take on what is required to build a brand. As I said at the beginning, every marketer and marketing agency have their own view on what is required, but for many outside of that sphere it is a mystery.

My approach in these tutorials has been to simplify the process and identify the important elements that I believe make up a brand, having worked with them and been responsible for them over the past 20 years.

The tip of the triangle is your brand essence. Having identified what you do practically, how you want your customers to feel, how you are going to communicate and what you stand for, your brand essence is you summing up what you bring to the world in a short (preferably catchy and memorable) statement.

It’s not ‘We sell XXX’.  Its more about what you bring, how you help or change things, it’s a sentiment or what your brand to achieve.  (If you’re saying ‘We sell XXX’, then you are desperately in need of some brand inspiration)

Some brands may use this as a strapline, that they use in their communication, for others it may be something that they feel is at the heart of their brand and business. What is your ‘essence’?

I sell a wide range of marketing services based on my skills and experience over 20 years, but that is hardly catchy or inspiring. My essence is ‘Transforming Your Business’, because that is what I set out to do with my business, that is what excites me and ultimately what I want to be with my clients – I want to transformational, and I want to appeal to people who want or need transformation, not people who just need marketing services.

Once we have the essence, we move onto a Vision Statement – but what exactly is that?

A Vision Statement is something that gives the company direction. It is the future and purpose of the company, thinking about what you want to become. It looks at questions such as ‘What problem are we solving for the greater good?’ or ‘Who and what are we inspiring to change?’ – although there is no fixed rule on what it has to be be. Mine is very simple – ‘Transforming Business through inspiring and innovative marketing’. My vision may change in the future, but for now that is the future I see and the focus I want to have.

A Vision statement promotes growth, both internally and externally. A strong vision helps teams focus on what matters the most for their company. It also invites innovation. A company with a vision know what they need to create to reach their objectives and goals

Ultimately, a vision statement is something to be proud of. For your employees and your customers.

Don’t just take my word for it, search vision statements for well-known brands online. There is actually a really good game to play where you hide the name of the brand and see if people can name them based on their vision and mission statements – I sometimes use it as an ice breaker, to get people thinking about brands they use and whether the vision rings true.

You might think you don’t know where to start, but that is the point of the last 5 tutorials. You have building up the content for your vision. It is a composite of the values and the personality of the brands (not all of them, that would be too much!!)

Go to the tutorial and define your essence and from that a Vision Statement should flow. Good Luck!

Chris Perkins is an Outsourced Marketing Director, working with clients usually on a part-time basis, to provide marketing leadership, strategy and direction. This course has been designed as a FREE to access resource to enable SME business owners and teams to create a workable business plan through a series of simple exercises.

If you require further help to manage your brand development, marketing strategy and execution, please email chris@oneobjective.co.uk