Brand Strategy → A figurative business compass.

Understanding the essence of Brand Strategy.

Is “brand strategist” an official job position?

One of the first questions that arise before hiring a branding agency or a creative firm revolves around the definition of brand strategy. The answer is usually vague because a brand strategist is somewhat of a self-proclaimed job title.

Unlike other professions, which require years to learn the skills and practices to succeed in the chosen trade, brand strategists come from diverse backgrounds, and many times, without even the basic understanding of what brand strategy is all about. Consequently, working with strategists can be confusing sometimes because it’s not a typical trade with a set of rules; almost every strategist I know has quite a different process from one another. (including myself!)

There is beauty to this rich diversity amongst brand strategists because it leads to new ideas and new possibilities. But on the flip side, if we don’t establish a working definition for “brand strategy,” we can cause problems to the customers we strive to guide.


The purpose of brand strategy.

By building brand strategies and creating brand identities for the past 12 years, I noticed a trap we creative people tend to fall into.

There is a lot of brand strategy language being tossed around, each strategist according to the terms he is familiar with, but that’s ok; it’s not going to make it or break it. The strategy can work no matter what vocabulary you use throughout the process. What’s more important is to understand the purpose of brand strategy.

“Brand strategy is a figurative compass to steer your company in making the right decisions.”

If the brand strategy doesn’t guide your business’s choice-making process, it’s nothing but a lofty idea full of fluff. We often develop these incredible big ideas for brands, but there’s a massive disconnect from the strategic phase to the execution phase. We cannot declare what the brand is just because we say it or design it nicely. Often, this will result in a strategy that fails to connect to the soul of the business and its customers.

The bottom line brand strategy takeaway.

Brand strategy is adaptive and agile, focusing on assisting a business to pave its way in the direction where the current potential opportunity lies—everything else is details.

Ask yourself this:
What am I currently doing to take my brand from point A to point B?


Yaniv Vaknin