Brand Strategy is for Everyone (Not just marketing!)

by Bruce McKinnon

I started my business back in 2009 to solve a specific problem. Namely that companies found it hard to define the value of their brand and put that value into an order. When I asked them to tell me their most important message I would invariably be told it’s not possible because it depends on the audience, the current campaign, the territory, the product, etc. all of which have their place, but the brand has to be able to rise above that minutia and be able to be defined in a concise and cohesive way.

So I developed the Brand Arrow® as a framework to help companies make good choices because it’s their job to make those choices – not the agency they hire to build a website or the PR agency writing a press release. Why?

Because nobody knows the brand better than the company that owns it. And that’s the truth!

And whilst we’re at it here are 4 more truths about the value brand strategy can deliver:

1. Brand Strategy is for the whole company, not just marketing because its job is to represent the whole company

Whilst the marketing team may well be the first to use a brand strategy in developing its communications, it’s just as important for the HR team for example, to use the values of the brand in managing the culture of the organisation; the sales team to use the key messaging in developing relationships with prospects, finance to know why the budget is being focussed on particular areas and of course, the CEO to be able to communicate a clear vision for the company. Read more

How the Church Can Engage in Discipling Marketplace Leaders

by Dr. Phil Walker and Renita Reed-Thomson

There is a story told about a frog in a kettle. The frog is placed in a kettle of cold water. The frog does not notice that the water temperature is being turned up gradually until it is too late. He dies from the heat of the water, not realizing the danger he was in.

The Global Church is suffering from the “frog in the kettle” syndrome. As people increase in financial security, they tend to decrease their dependence on God. It is time to get the frog out of the kettle! In many parts of the world the local church has moved from an evangelical, spiritual force in the community to a closed off social activity in the corner. This move away from the vitality of government, education and business is slowly making the local church irrelevant to the community it is called to serve as a light. Like the frog in the pot, we are slowly reaching a boiling point from which we will not recover our critical role and calling. The dropping statistics of church attendance in both Europe and North America is alarming. Failure to make Jesus relevant in the marketplace will lead to a failure of mission. While business as mission has found a niche in the Christian community, it is not fulfilling its potential.

In 2004 the Occasional Paper on Business as Mission from The Lausanne Movement called on the church to disciple and release its members to be lights in the community.

We call upon the church worldwide to identify, affirm, pray for, commission, and release business people and entrepreneurs to exercise their gifts and calling as business people in the world—among all peoples and to the ends of the earth.

In the same proclamation it called on the business people to live out their calling as Ambassadors, moving out of the four walls of the church into the four corners of the marketplace. Read more