Power generators and pipeline companies have traditionally had little time for the “B” word. But with the energy space abuzz with deals, savvy CEOs in the sector have turned onto branding to push up valuations and strengthen their businesses.
Tips for success:
1. Think ahead: Allow a year, rather than a month to get this done.
2. Take aim before you fire: Don’t throw money at communications until you have a focused brand strategy based on real (rather than assumed) market insights.
3. Involve the CEO: Without passionate endorsement from the CEO branding efforts will fail. The CEO and senior team should be consulted throughout the brand development process.
4. Cut the clutter: Get rid of unnecessary (often costly) sub-brands, clarify your offerings, take longer to write less, drop the jargon, focus on and repeat your key messages everywhere, create a diagram to convey your business model and express the unique value the firm delivers.
5. Employees first: Don’t forget the power of a brand to motivate and focus your people. Always sell the brand to your employees before going to the outside world.
6. Build evidence: Case studies, thought pieces, achievements, and so on are the basic evidence for your brand story. But these days, everyone has them. Pay special attention to how you can best express your competitive differentiation and showcase it.
7. Be bold: What feels safe today will be tired tomorrow. Your brand should promote a big vision for what the business will become rather than what it is today.