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Running A Brand Sprint For Your Organization: The How-To A brand sprint is a three-hour workshop that comprises six activities, all designed to create a guide that identifies core brand values, personality traits, and strategic positioning for an organization.

By Dipika Mallya

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Are you looking to revamp your organization's brand identity, vision, and positioning? You're not alone! Research has shown that 68% of organizations attribute revenue growth to having a solid, consistent brand presence.

A brand sprint is a three-hour workshop that comprises six activities, all designed to create a guide that identifies core brand values, personality traits, and strategic positioning for an organization.

Originally developed by Jake Knapp and Google Ventures, this method has been used by startups and Fortune 500 companies alike to develop a compelling brand strategy. Read on to learn more about the activities, methods, and frameworks used to run a brand sprint workshop.

20-Year Roadmap The first activity is designed to picture the future state of your organization- what will your company be doing five, ten, 15, and 20 years from now? Start by drawing a timeline on a whiteboard or sheet of paper, and brainstorm ideas based on considerations such as new product and service developments, industry changes, and social and technological factors. The purpose of this activity isn't to develop exact solutions for the future; instead, the goal is to get your team thinking about long-term strategy and business goals.

What, How, Why The second activity in the brand sprint process aims to define your organization's "why," or core purpose. Start by drawing three concentric circles on a whiteboard or sheet of paper, and label them "why," "how," and "what," respectively, starting from the inner-most circle. Next, develop answers for each section by asking the following questions:

  • WHY Why does your company exist? Is there a larger purpose or mission associated with your organization?
  • HOW How does your organization achieve its goals? What's your competitive advantage?
  • WHAT What products or services does your organization produce?

By the end of this exercise, you should have a clearly-defined brand purpose that is linked to business goals and core activities.

Top Three Values + Top Three Audiences Based on your brand purpose, first identify three values that best represent your organization; examples include sustainability, luxury, honesty, innovation, simplicity, excitement, and affordability. Once this is done, move on to the second activity, which is identifying the top three customer segments that you're looking to target with existing products and services.

Personality Sliders How is your brand perceived relative to other brands in the marketplace? Start this activity by creating a sliding scale with opposing characteristics; for example, elite versus mass appeal, serious versus playful, conventional versus rebel, and friend versus authority. Next, identify brands associated with each trait, such as Chanel for elite and H&M for mass appeal. Finally, place your brand on each spectrum based on your customers' perceptions and product associations. By the end of this activity, you will have identified your brand's personality traits and key attributes.

Competitor Mapping The final activity in the brand sprint involves comparing your brand to competitors using specific indicators such as price and quality. Start by creating a 2x2 matrix, with one axis representing price, and the other representing perceived quality. Place competitor brands on the map based on these indicators, and then position your brand on the map. After completing this exercise, you should have a comprehensive overview of the competitive landscape that your organization operates within. Once all six activities are completed, compile the findings to develop your brand guide. This will thus be a foundational document that can help with any branding decision, such as developing a new logo, marketing strategy, or communications plan. Good luck!

Related: A Fresh New Look: How Rebranding Can Reaffirm What An Enterprise Does Best

Dipika Mallya

Founder, Ideation Labs

Dipika Mallya is the founder of Ideation Labs, a training consultancy focused on developing entrepreneurship and innovation programs for educational institutions, corporations, and business incubators. She has worked for leading entities in the region, including the UAE Ministry of Education, The Al-Futtaim Group, and Cleartrip Middle East. She holds a master’s degree in advertising from The University of Texas at Austin, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her areas of interest include educational design, innovation policy, and social entrepreneurship.

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