After 25 years as a brand consultant, it strikes me that a surprising number of managers are unable to quantify the value of their brand. This value is first considered and taken into the balance sheet in connection with mergers and acquisitions. I am convinced that this value is critical when stakeholders assess an enterprise's financial situation and the figures should be included in any company's balance sheet.
Let me first share some research results from Harvard Business School with you. Harvard has researched 20 different sectors and identified three common denominators which characterise the 250 most profitable enterprises that they studied. Year after year. These common denominators are ‘identity’, ‘storytelling’ and ‘culture’. These companies have described their identity in a way which contributes to an effective storytelling which ultimately builds a culture which both employees and customers want to be part of.
The hardcore documentation is that these enterprises score better on critical parameters, such as bottom line growth (4x), job creation (7x), growth in share price (12x) and profit performance (7.5x). I often use this example when I meet conventional MBAs, engineers and lawyers on the other side of the table, who perhaps perceive brand-building to be the logo, profile and colours on packaging, and a PowerPoint template.