Tamsen Webster told me ” Most organizations don’t know why they act the way that they do.” That’s a big problem for branding, because the gap between what is likely your aspirational brand (how you want to be seen) and your actual brand (the attributes that really distinguish you) makes communication and execution difficult.
The first big shift in branding is closing that gap. Once that is done it becomes easier to operate more in line with your world view.
In this interview, Tamsen Webster explained the reverse engineering process of helping companies understand how they do what they do, what makes them different in terms of their world view and how that speaks to customers.
If you start to look at these baseline assumptions about what problem do they solve, for whom, and why do they solve it that way, then you start to reveal incredible sources of differentiation between even commodity-like products and commodity-like brands because when it comes down to why you do something that way, you start to expose, “Well, because we’re really for these people and these people want this goal, and we see this particular problem in the way of that goal,” and all of that together combines to create a completely different world view company to company.
It’s enormously powerful not just for branding, but for company strategy as well.
When you discover your Red Thread (from a Scandinavian phrase) it can help you develop a message that resonates.
People will take action when there is a conflict between what they want and a problem that must be solved in order to achieve that goal. And it’s your view of what the real problem is and how you address that problem differently, that separates you from your competitors.
Being clear about how your company views that problem and communicating that well is what helps you escape comparing features and benefits. That would be nice, wouldn’t it?