Only Fully Revealed Brands Are Open To A Customer Relationship

It’s fun to unearth a thoughtful talk on YouTube, one that can help inform your own work. The following offering from Chicago Booth School of Business features two professors and a client. The client is sharp.

Ann Mukherjee, former President of Pepsi Global Insights and current Global CMO at S.C. Johnson, says:

Every corporation today is looking to build sustainable results for their shareholders. What a brand does is connect your product, your service to a consumer. You want that growth to be sustainable? You better have very strong brands.

In today’s world of infinite choices, you have loyalty today and not tomorrow. What brands do is create a relationship, and in today’s world of marketing it’s not just about buying brands, it’s about buying into brands.

I love that she says a brand’s purpose is to connect to a consumer.

When we go to work for clients, we want to win hearts and minds—that’s the path to brand preference and customer loyalty. The question is, how does a particular brand achieve these lofty goals when people don’t like advertising, and they don’t like altering their behaviors?

The answer is simpler than you may think. Companies must peel away their layers and truly reveal themselves. People need something to grab onto and hold in their minds. Something simple but strong.

Columbia Sportswear, for instance, is “Tested Tough in the Pacific Northwest.” That’s simple and strong (and not something we came up with). It also happens to be true.

It’s never easy to pare things down to one elegant thought that perfectly captures the company’s spirit. It takes the kind of focus that a craftsman brings to woodworking or a sculptor to stone. You chisel away—day after day—until the true form is revealed, and the meaning conveyed.

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