October 30, 2019
Sometimes different words mean the same thing, and sometimes they don’t. In the world of branding – and probably in the world of everything else too – there are certain words that send people spiraling down the rabbit hole, searching for a clear definition. Well, if you’re down there in the cold, dark den of uncertainty, it’s time to climb out.
Here’s a glossary that will hopefully shed light on what are possibly the most confusing branding terms:
Platform: Your brand’s self-image. Or put differently, it’s the value(s) your customers associate with your brand. It’s not a tangible thing, more of a stance.
Just as Apple is all about creativity and Red Bull is all about energy.
Campaign: How you shout out your core value to the world. Essentially, it’s a series of ads that look the same, feel the same and make the same point – without saying the exact same thing.
Think Apple’s “Shot on iPhone” campaign.
Mission: That thing that makes you bounce out of bed in the morning and run your business. It’s what drives your entire company and gives it a reason for being. It’s the big idea, expressed in a short sentence, about what your brand is doing for its target.
Take a look at Alzheimer Association’s1: to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.
Vision: Your view of how things should be. It describes what the world/your industry/your clients’ lives would look like once you’ve achieved your mission.
Alzheimer Association’s vision? A world without Alzheimer’s disease.
Positioning Statement: Your internal rally cry – one that aligns everyone in the company. Although this mantra needs to include details, it should be short and sweet and take up no more than a sentence or two.
As an example, here is Ikea’s positioning statement: Your partner in better living. We do our part, you do yours. Together we save money.
Tagline: Your external rally cry – ideally three to four words – that sums up the main, (and I can’t stress this enough) aspirational benefit of choosing your brand.
Ikea’s tagline: The wonderful everyday
Tagline vs. Slogan
Check out Ben’s blog on Taglines for a comprehensive comparison.
1 See www.alz.org