Creating, developing or managing a brand is hard work. It’s really hard. More often than not however, we work in the shallows and claim that the hard work is done. It’s easy to think that developing the more shallow aspects of a brand - like the look & feel, logo or a tagline is “branding”. But that’s the easy stuff...
If a brand is an idea, then it’s how you support that idea in everything you do that creates a deep and meaningful brand. There’s two ways to do it. You can wade in the shallows, or you can get into the deep end of the pool.
To make sure your brand is focused and true you may have to support it through operations, financials, who you hire, culture, your efforts in customer service or customer relationships. Really anything but the look and feel.
The shallow is look and feel - backed up by nothing. Empty promises. Sometimes kept alive through a barrage of impressions. This works for first time interactions. But after that the truth is known. People will certainly catch on to the fact that you talk more than you walk. For this you’ve got to rely on a constant new waves of new interactions.
But, the more people you get in front of to make that one and only first impression - the more you leave behind to counteract the effort.
Swim to the deep end. Where there’s no safety in the shallow. Here you have to walk more than you talk. There’s no safety. Here you’ve got to construct your story, and show people that you live it. That you rely on it. Look and feel doesn’t matter much here.