Does a brand need a soul?
I say yes, and here’s why.
The brand soul has a lot of other names – architecture, map, and heart – but I like soul.
I first heard about this concept in Simon Sinek’s ‘Why’ model TEDTalk where he talks about the why what and how of business.
It’s about a vision that can be separated into four quadrants: Mind, Body, Heart, and Spirit.
Mind = thinking.
What do we do? What does our brand do for people?
Body = physical.
How does my brand move? How does it act and operate?
A brand’s values and its tone of voice.
Heart = ever-present pulse.
The all-important why.
This is the reason for being; why you exist as a brand.
It’s about what contribution you’re making and what impact that has on the customer.
Spirit = vision.
It’s the future state that guides us.
If your brand is as successful as it can be, what’s the future state you’re striving for?
So that’s the four quadrants but how do you apply them?
Easy. In decision making.
When you’re hiring people or choosing brands and people to collaborate with, all you need to do is ask, ‘Does this align with my brand soul? Does this feel right?’
A brand soul is not you – the business owner or CEO – on a page but it does have to be about what motivates you, and what is meaningful and aligned to you.
And it can be fun to flesh it out by figuring out what color, car, song, or celebrity embodies your brand soul.
Having and using a brand soul is not only a great way to save management time; it’s also an excellent tool for defining the ideology of a business which is what ultimately attracts the right customers, staff, and stakeholders.