Clients come to me for many reasons, primarily when they feel their brands are misfiring. A lot of that is because they don't view their brands as an asset. And they don't know how to use diversity and inclusion to increase that value. When you view your brand as an asset you are able to grow brand equity. My company, FIG Brand Strategy Firm did a blog brand equity and I encourage you to read it if you need more clarity. What is Brand Equity post.
Basically brand equity is an arbitrary value that is placed on your brand. Companies like BMW, Verizon, Gatorade, are worth millions and millions of dollars. And to be clear, we aren't talking about their inventory, company buildings or anything tangible; their brands are worth millions. But where does diversity come in? It's one thing to have a brand worth some major dollars, but how much more value would diversity add to the brand's overall equity?
Well, what brand is? It's an arbitrary name, feeling, idea, logo. That's brand. Let's explore "feeling" in relation to a brand. Feeling by definition means affected by emotion - this is why so many brands have created emotion based advertising. The reason "feeling" is so important to diversity is that there's a constant desire to connect and in order to connect, we must first "feel." For this to be effective, a company must view diversity strategically and intentionally. There needs to be a strong sense of diversity internally and there must be an even stronger sense of inclusion externally.
This means the company must have a company rich in different cultures, sexual orientations, religious backgrounds, education levels, family status and so forth. That mix will provide a diverse way of thinking, rationalizing, etc. to create an external experience that is rich in inclusion. The combination of the two create that "feeling" we all desire to have. And that, my friends is what we're after.
So, look at your business. Do you have some blind spots in your brand when it comes to diversity? Is your brand equity worth more? How different would your business be if you viewed diversity as an asset and not a Human Resource requirement? I'm here to tell you, brands require strategy, procedures and maintenance and if you aren't viewing your brand as an asset: you should be.