Brands make promises to consumers, but where do these promises come from? How do brand teams decide what promise to make? This is where the brand essence statement (BES) comes in. It is a document, picture, video, or some other communication vehicle that captures, usually in words and visuals, the intrinsic nature and indispensable quality that makes the brand unique, compelling, and meaningful to the target.
Importantly, the BES goes far beyond marketing communications to describe the holistic nature of the brand, and it informs company-wide decision-making. Identifying the essence of a brand such that it fits with the target, can fit with the current brand, and is superior to competitors requires artistry and science—artistry to create a BES and science to assess, refine, validate, and perfect it.
This note explores the process of developing a superior BES—and then consistently executing against it.