Brand 3.0: the brand as a guide for the behaviour of an entire organisation
This paved the way for Brand 3.0: the brand as a guide to the organisation’s entire operation. The components of brand changed, and with it the way in which it must be managed. With this, the brand is no longer only the basis of communication, but is also the basis for the actions of an entire organisation. This approach required additional capabilities and qualities from those responsible for managing the brand. The brand manager must now understand how the organisation is organised, what contribution each of the departments makes to the organisation, and how each of these departments can help deliver on the brand promises. The typical communications professional may not have experience in this area. However, business professionals have more experience in this role. This is a professional group which is generally unrelated to brands, but have responsibility for organisational structure and management issues.
Managing Brand 3.0 is in its infancy
With pioneering work still to be done in this field, communications professionals are alone in this evolution. While we see the brand is gaining ground, the question remains how can it move beyond communications – a necessary step to make Brand 3.0 truly land in organisations. We see positive developments. Indeed, there are organisations where the brand transcends beyond the communications department, and where it’s treated more like a business asset rather than a communication tool. It is striking that these organisations don’t talk about the brand per se, but use terms such as ‘core ideology’, ‘DNA’ and ‘purpose’. The meaning is the same, but by expressing it in a different way, the brand seems to be much better behaved throughout the organisation. Of course, this helps if the message is broadcast and promoted by the CEO, and not just by the communications department.
The brand in identity crisis? Perhaps. But what you promise as an organisation remains one of the core priorities for organisations in the coming years. A key first step is to develop a relevant, coherent and distinctive communication message. However, to embed it across all aspects of the business is a challenge. Whether this is called brand management or otherwise, it’s clear that work in this field is more important than ever. What is beyond doubt, we shall remain pioneers in this field for some time.