Think + Do » an exploration of mission-driven marketing and design

Are You Being True to Your Brand?

When it comes to branding an organization, having a memorable visual identity is valuable, but not as valuable as being true to the core values of the organization.

This past weekend, during the Super Bowl, there were many well-crafted and humorous ads. While fun to watch, many of the ads made me ask: Are companies simply creating entertainment, or are they effectively building their brands?

During the game, a friend recounted the plot of a favorite ad from last year’s Super Bowl, but then confessed they couldn’t remember which company the commercial was for. Advertising your organization is an opportunity to share the story and values of your brand, not just to momentarily grab attention.

This year, the commercials for Denny’s restaurants were a good example of a company using their high-profile advertising time to promote their brand, not just entertain (Watch ad here). Denny’s campaign was built around promoting an upcoming event during which they will be giving away their signature Grand Slam breakfast. As a brand built on delivering an affordable dining experience, Denny’s reinforces their core values with an offer that acknowledges their customers’ need for affordability in a struggling economy.

Too many companies that bought Super Bowl advertising time made entertainment paramount to their brand, which is fine if you’re in the business of providing entertainment. Denny’s gave consumers a chance to connect with their brand. To strengthen your brand, take advantage of every opportunity to tell your organization’s story by asking: Am I reinforcing our core values in a way that’s meaningful to our audience?

– Claire Napier

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