What do Google, McDonald’s, Amazon, and Apple have in common? They are all high value brands. In fact, they are among the top ten most valuable brands in the world. And how about Lego, PayPal, Lenovo, Mini, and Moet & Chandon? They are the newest additions to the Top 100.

What is it about these companies’ brand development strategies that has pushed them past the competition, to market dominance? Right past Pizza Hut, Nintendo, Gap, Duracell, and Nokia?

Lego, for example, has just reached a value of £5.36 billion, due in large part to brand development decisions to expand into the motion picture and computer game realm. Its brand development strategists are studying the audience, looking ahead, and keeping innovation aligned with the brand’s USP.


Let’s take a look.

Heighten Brand Value with the Right Brand Development

The highly valuable brands mentioned above all have some pretty impressive brand development principles—to which they have adhered for most of their brand lives. Here are a few of them, which we all can (and should) emulate:

  • Google: focus on solving a specific problem that exists in its target audience; intense attention to the end product (i.e. goals); unconventional management style; atmosphere of innovation; focus on values rather than short-term gains
  • McDonald’s: new, innovative production-line philosophy for food (“Speedee Service System”); unique service to fill a market gap and to satisfy a consumer need; strong internal brand communications, concerning best practices; trademarked mascot; simple, recognisable and trademarked logo
  • Amazon: “exotic and different” ethos; brand name beginning with “A” for an alphabetical edge; exhaustive research and settling on list of most promising products; slow, steady, strategic growth
  • Apple: specialization by each founder (each did what “lit him up”); study of consumer preferences to create something that “lit them up”; drive to do something that hasn’t been done before (USP); and, of course, innovation

A focus on growing quickly and on making a record amount of profit is what’s at the forefront of many entrepreneurs’ brand development strategies. However, as you can see, that’s not what works.

Here are a few pieces of advice from the brand development experts at How to Build a Brand, for creating and supporting a brand that will last long enough to build great value:

  • Focus on the consumer, rather than yourself: What problem does your ideal client have that you can solve? How would he or she like that solution to be packaged? Now develop your brand by communicating that benefit with great clarity. Lego’s customers want movies and computer games, too. Lego realised this and delivered.
  • Find a gap in the market and communicate your USP: Doing the same thing, just better, isn’t good enough anymore. You must solve a new problem or solve an old problem in an entirely different way. This is your USP (Unique Selling Proposition). Lego recognised an opportunity to expand their brand in differing, yet parallel markets.
  • Be personal: You can no longer hide behind your corporate logo and expect consumers to be satisfied with that. They want to know you. They want to meet you. They want to learn about your values so they can decide if they want to connect with your brand. Lego shares its story, and so should you.

This advice is certainly broad-sweeping, albeit a great start for building your brand development strategy.

Will you set up your brand to join the ranks of Google, Apple, Amazon, McDonald’s, Lego, PayPal, Moet & Chandon, Mini, and Lenovo? Will you employ the brand development principles crucial to big-value brand success?

If the answer is YES, then we invite you to attend the next Brand Building Bootcamp, a live, one-day event in which you will learn to increase the visibility, sustainability, profitability—and value—of your brand. Registration is simple. Just go to today, before your preferred date is sold out.

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