Your brand is your reputation — what everyone says about you when you’re not around.
The current state of your brand lies in the collective perceptions of those who have an understanding of your organization, be it shallow or deep-rooted. They may be right, they may be wrong; it doesn’t matter. Perception is reality.
When beginning the branding process, it’s important to have a clear understanding of brand perceptions. How do you find them? By simply asking.
Ask everyone and anyone who’s affected by your brand. Customers, staff at every level of the organization, friends, partners, even competitors can help you grasp a sense of what people think and feel about your brand.
Once existing perceptions are understood, it’s the job of the leadership team to define what those perceptions should be in your ideal future. This should fall in line with your organization’s products, services, values and business plan.
Once the current reality and the ideal future are clear, see how wide the gap is between the two. This distance will define how to build and implement your brand going forward.