A quick run down of what Brand Ideals are

These are the intentions of a company or business regardless of their size or their nature to change the lives of people. For a great result in business, the brand has to stand for something that is compelling. The ideals stand out to the customers whether the brand is creating a new product or service, repositioning a brand, working on a merger or creating a retail presence and many more. They are making organizations grow and outperform their competitors. They literally create a bridge to success.

Brand ideals include; vision, meaning, coherence, flexibility, value, sustainability, commitment and differentiation.

Vision:
This requires an effective, inspirational and passionate leader who inspires others to make a brand successful by making them see the future in a new way. This requires an organization to think beyond the obvious and deliver the possible.

Meaning:
These are the fastest form of communication. Symbols being their vessels; they propel for creativity through the unique forms and expression, builds agreement with a group of decision makers. Meanings evolve over time because as companies grow, business may change.
For example, when the Aromat product was the hype in Kenya, people understood its effect on food that people would want to buy it to try it in their food. Though people took the joke took a whole different idea in social media, everyone knew that it changed something boring to look great.

Authenticity:
This is the cure of the brand. This means that brands are not the business property they represent but the consumers’ property. It is more of ‘practice what you preach’ in an organization. It is all about voicing your brand in accordance to the consumers’ demographic, understanding your customer and how they interpret your brand this is by knowing your brands weakness and working on them. Honesty is the selling factor in basic terms because once a consumer senses a loss of genuine and sustainability, the organization will never stand a chance.

Coherence:
It is the quality that ensures that all the pieces that the brand communicates holds together in a way that feels obvious to the customer by building trust, fostering loyalty and delighting the customer.

The Safaricom Ltd Company in Kenya together with the Coca-Cola Company has literally communicated their brand coherence that is very easy for a customer to define what the companies are about without over thinking.

Principles of iconic brands
1. Simple confidence
2. Honesty without over promising
3. With the current trends
4. Great use of icons
5. Attentive to details

Flexibility:
This is very important especially in marketing of products. A company cannot tell how they will improve in terms of products in a few years time and that’s why innovation needs a brand to be flexible. With the generation always changing trends, a brand has to be very quick in fitting in by being part of the team no matter how old it is. Brand flexibility requires brand identity systems of an organization to quickly seize new opportunities in the marketplace. The best examples in Kenya is the health sector being hospital care where they introduced that used ‘sema doc’ so as to call a doctor anytime anywhere to get help.

Commitment:
A brand is a very important asset that requires protection, nurturing and preservation. Once a brand identity is identified for an organization, the organization needs to commit to it. Most companies provide tools to their employees thus simplifying it brand champion or success. This requires a disciplined approach that ensures its integrity and relevance.

For example, if an employee feels left out in an organization, they will not try their best in succeeding the company and will try to look for another way out. When this happens to every new member that joins that organization, then the company will not grow because it will be spending too much time in recruitment which is not important to companies with loyal employees.

Value:
This is one of the important goals of every organization. Brand value plays a crucial part in measuring the effectiveness of brand strategy and its marketing initiatives thereby useful insights into strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The brand value is upheld through the brand tangible (the brand identity) and intangible assets (the brand). Brand value is usually preserved though legal protection that include trademarks, copyrights and all the other protection.

Differentiation:
The world is a place that is always filled choices as all brands call for the customers’ attention. For consumers to choose one brand over others, brands need to irreplaceable through being different and this involves making it easier for the customer understand the difference.

For example, especially in hair products, once the customers know what they want like hair growth, they will buy the first product that says it increases hair growth but the catch will be how the product was noticed.

Sustainability:
When, vision, meaning, coherence, flexibility, value, commitment and differentiation are acquired, it becomes automatic that your brand can sustain itself for a long period of time. This is because trust has also played a key role in the organization to the clients. Consumers will be able to use your brand because they treat it as part of their lives and this makes them talk for you even without realizing that they are marketing it.

For example, when thermos (brand name) in Kenya, became very effective and useful to the customers, they could not differentiate it to a flask because their trust in the product became part of their lifestyle.