October 12, 2022
    Reding_icon 7 MINUTE READ

    BRAND DAY, Episode 13:

    Your Mission as Your Message

    Aligning Your Brand Identity and Marketing

    Messaging consistency is incredibly important to building a quality brand. Communicating the same ideas in the same brand voice across your ads, content, and all other interactions with customers, prospects, potential employees, and your broader community is crucial. 
    But beyond this horizontal alignment of your message across media, you also need to ensure vertical alignment: from your brand mission, values, and personality through your positioning to your messaging. 

    Going Beyond a Mission Statement

    Mission statements are great, but be honest: how many companies actually live those statements out? How many companies keep a sign on the wall with a nice sounding statement that no employee can remember, much less believe in and get behind? 
    Rather than stopping at the mission statement, let's go a level deeper: what's a mission, anyway? 
    A mission is your driving force. It's a deeply-fixed, unchanging belief in what your brand is doing. It's less about what your brand does and more about why you believe your brand should be doing that thing. 
    Famous author and speaker Simon Sinek defines your "why" as your purpose, cause, or belief - the reason your company exists beyond making money. 
    Sinek says that very few companies can articulate their "why." 
    You may not be in a place to get your entire leadership team together to focus on discovering your "why" (but if you can, it's an incredibly valuable exercise), but if you stop and think about it, you might already have a pretty good sense of what it is. Why do you believe in your brand? What excites you about its potential? Why do you choose to stay with your brand instead of looking for a different one to market?

    People Buy Your Why

    "People don't buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe." - Simon Sinek, Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, 2009.  
    What's the point of this exercise, beyond (hopefully) reinvigorating your passion for what you do every day? 
    Ultimately, people don't buy your product. Sure, they buy how they benefit from your product, but the key to turning a one-time purchase into a lifelong loyal customer is to find those people who align with your why. 
    You know the research: people choose companies whose values and purpose align with their own. They want to identify with the brands they do business with. 
    This means that taking a stand - in other words, translating your mission, your "why," into your messaging - is crucial to driving loyalty. 

    Attracting the Right Audience 

    When you stand for something, you attract people who identify with whatever it is you stand for. But that also means you repel people who don't. That's a good thing! 
    Many businesses want to appeal to everyone (or at least everyone within their industry). But this makes your job as a marketer far harder than it needs to be. While the reasons for this are beyond the scope of this article, the relevant point to note is that the better your brand's purpose and mission align with the values of a given prospect or customer, the more likely they are to stick around, buy more from you, and tell others about you. 
    Meanwhile, repelling people who don't align with your brand frees you up from serving customers who may turn out to be a bad fit in the long run, allowing those efforts to prioritize your best customers. 

    How to Align Your Mission and Message

    Your mission needs to hit a couple of points in order to be communicated to your audience: 
    • It needs to be clear: not just clear to your company's employees, but easily understandable to an outsider
    • It needs to be focused: simplicity always works better than complexity, and the #1 rule in creating any communications for your brand should always be to focus on one idea
    • It needs to be consistent: like we said at the beginning of this article, without consistent messaging, your brand appears to be all over the place and people will forget you
    Once you've ironed out exactly what your mission looks like, it's time to release it to the world. The first principle is that your mission never changes; the heart of your message will always stay the same, and needs to be communicated over and over to help people associate your brand with that mission. 
    Within that parameter, the second principle is that how you communicate that message can change: you can share your mission in a variety of creative ways. Whether you sponsor an event (think Red Bull and the crazy athletic events they sponsor), create content, or advertise via an omnichannel online and offline campaign, you can use various expressions to make your mission come to life for people. 
    Strategically aligning your mission, message, and marketing in a way that stands out and gets attention can be a time-consuming process, especially when you're doing it for your own brand that you are face-to-face with all the time. 
    If developing new and exciting ways of creatively communicating your mission seems overwhelming, reach out to Adkom. We can help you connect the dots, solidify your messaging and creative, and build out a campaign (using out-of-home to broadcast your mission). Sometimes, an outside perspective is all it takes to make a breakthrough in your next marketing plan.