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A better way to map your brand strategy

‘People, not just consumers or target markets, buy products and services. Whatever we do, we must ultimately add value to people’s lives, and not only disrupt them,’ Samantha Condon, Group MD at ETIKET, passionately states.

The crises of 2020 will probably be referred to as a massive turning point in the marketing and advertising communications industry. All surveys commissioned in 2020/21 have shown that since the profound negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic, people have many different expectations from brands and brand communication. Relevance, a deep understanding of human needs, and much subtler selling messages are insights emerging from nearly all surveys. ‘It is almost like people are starting to take offence to object-based marketing,’ Condon continues, ‘with respondents indicating sustainability, community involvement, openness and brand authenticity as growing in importance when making purchasing decisions.’

To make sure a brand’s messaging is authentic, salient, and consistent, ETIKET has developed The ReImagine Toolkit, re-imagining the 4Ps of marketing focusing on Personality, Purpose, Product and Promise. ‘We use this in-house methodology to make sure that together, the client and agency have framed the brand’s personality and what the brand experience should be. This human-centric approach becomes a guiding star to all our creative efforts.’ To sense-check the brand’s self-perception, ETIKET applies design-thinking principles to make sure it gets a deep understanding of the customer and identify why a customer has a preference, makes a purchase or takes action.

The ReImagine Toolkit creates a strategic framework for the brand within the context of competitor brands and consumer insights, based on the business’ salient points. Including a third axis in every dimension (as opposed to the usual two-axes segmentation), the ReImagine Toolkit allows for a more refined and unique positioning of a brand resulting in building brand meaning through salience rather than differentiation (USPs). The construct continuums measured on the three axes in each dimension (the 4Ps) always answer one of the following three questions: Why does the brand do it? How does the brand do it? What does the brand stand for?

In terms of brand personality, we work intensely with Jungian archetypes or universal characters and characteristics that are part of the collective unconscious, which provide an implied value set around a brand. As an additional overlay to the personality dimension, we have created eight master models with 24 brand archetypes, depicting the brand, or a business, as an archetypal character. For instance, an explorer, provider, or challenger creates an essential and intrinsic understanding and meaning of the business’s personality, how it should behave and how it can inspire action.

The conceptual and theoretical thinking behind the ReImagine Toolkit has been stress tested with brand experts, academics, research experts, a psychometrist, a clinical psychologist, and marketing experts. The process is captured in a concise brand document called the Reimagine Playbook, detailing the plotting of a brand’s Personality, Purpose and Product, and the processed and positioned plotting of the refined brand Promise. Furthermore, it expands into practical examples of how this is relevant for the brand’s tone of voice with a messaging formula. This breakdown gives brand-specific guidelines that can be used as a template for marketing communication messages.

‘ETIKET offers powerful brand and creative expertise which any business needs to thrive. Their agility and knowledge about brand strategy have delivered consistent results for us as a business. Their human-centric approach brings fresh insights and ensures effective engagement with our audience. Our relationship is not merely reliant on normal creative executions. Still, it has grown into a partnership of sharing skills which we apply with great effectiveness daily,’ Marise van der Lith, Head of Marketing at Ads24, states.

Over the last decade and a half, ETIKET has expanded its services to offer a comprehensive and integrated offering, including brand strategy, design thinking, virtual experiences, extensive digital and social offerings, as well as traditional Through the Line (TTL) marketing services.

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