Aligning brand strategy with business strategy: Interview with Scott Oxford

The C-Suite typically sights brand as anything ‘shiny’ that the advertising and marketing office handles, but are they missing out on a useful opportunity to capitalise on the alignment among brand name approach and company approach?

In this job interview, Internet marketing speaks with brand name strategist and storyteller Scott Oxford about the tactical and strategic worth that manufacturer can deliver. We also discuss how putting an emphasis on manufacturer can permit a business to be extra connected with its buyers than ever before.

As a spouse at creative company New Phrase Purchase, Oxford has headed up inventive and manufacturer tactic for practically 20 several years. In point, he is so passionate about the subject matter that he released BrandJam, a podcast devoted to “getting underneath the hood” of all things brand name. Right after speaking with recognisable Australian brands of all measurements and across all industries, he has come to see brand as some thing a great deal a lot more than visual expression. For Oxford brand is a tale that impacts each component of what a organization does. 

“​​I see model really significantly as the way anyone solutions the phone, the way we behave when a client interacts with us, the text which is on a box that arrives – all of the touchpoints. I assume we have figured out more and much more that model wants to be knowledgeable by a tale at all concentrations,” states Oxford. 

Model as a central resource of fact

Early in his vocation Oxford grew to become fascinated with the url concerning psychology and storytelling and how it could influence buyer behaviour. 

“Learning that we all react subliminally to these points genuinely obtained me thinking about how manufacturers are all in the organization of developing link and that if you want to create a link with somebody, you want to be able to relate to them on the things that make a difference to them and on all of these sort of aware and unconscious information.”

He claims that technique is practical for acquiring every person internally (the persons that work for a business enterprise) and externally (shoppers) agreeing on “one central supply of truth”. 

Listening to consumers

The crucial functionality for a superior model strategist is to recognize customers. Following a great deal exploration, Oxford realised that folks make selections and judgements on brand names primarily based on small facts. And brand names can really regulate people information if they treatment to listen. 

Instead of presuming, the most effective brands are utilising instruments like social listening to comprehend clients and gain suggestions. Oxford states finest in course are listening to prospects in private and community realms. “And that is not just employing a current market analysis agency. That’s placing mechanisms in place to really make all those discussions. Whether or not it be on the net or around the telephone, or in groups in people traditional study techniques. They are making prospects simply because all people enjoys to come to feel heard and understood.”

He tells me a tale from a number of decades again when he was sitting down at the doctor’s business office with his sick baby, waiting to be viewed. After ready tensely for 50 minutes with no interaction he wanted to leave to alter his baby’s nappy. The receptionist simply just informed him that if he left the following human being in line would consider his put. By natural means he was furious. The tale Oxford tells is about how not to handle customer expertise. If there had been crystal clear conversation, normal updates and some human knowing for how tense it is as a father or mother to wait around with a unwell baby, the circumstance could have been distinct. Anger would have been subtle and believe in restored.

The stage is that suboptimal model encounters lose shopper rely on. Examining in on prospects and supplying them an chance to say how they feel can be extremely worthwhile. Oxford claims he has seen situations exactly where a purchaser may reveal something in a brand name study that changes the trajectory of a business enterprise.

“As I generally say, any time we do a client do the job about manufacturer method, it’s actually about aligning model method with small business system. Which is the function. But what we obtain is that the insights truly condition organization strategy,” Oxford states.

“Every manufacturer has a unique established of clients and a unique opportunity to use a complete variety of vintage fantastic outdated fashioned cellphone phone calls and face-to-confront teams, where lockdowns permit, and a whole whole lot of on line approaches to immediately converse with prospects, but also to tap into what is being reported about them.”

Authenticity and purpose 

These times purpose and authenticity have turn into synonymous with brand name. Oxford has viewed the rise of for-objective businesses or businesses that substantially aid or align themselves with social organisations. 

On the podcast Oxford has spoken with specialists from reason-led brand names such as Who Provides a Crap and Mood Tea about these subjects in depth. He suggests further than environmental activism, buyers are hunting at how manufacturers address staff and how they impression the community. 

“As customers, we’re essentially hunting at persons who practically set their dollars where their mouth is and say, ‘Yes we’re unashamedly a business in this article to make funds and there is nothing at all incorrect with that, but we are not likely to do it at the price of the world or of folks. And in truth, we have an possibility and a accountability to lead again.’”

At the conclude of the working day in a crowded market, when a client just cannot make a conclusion primarily based on the high quality of the solution or the company, then they will shift on to the following most important point. How a manufacturer is producing the environment a better put. But brand names also will need to be authentic.

“I consider we’re starting to be additional and additional discerning as to whether or not a model has just ‘tacked on’ a purpose,” he states.

Authenticity is generating confident that a model story and the discussions that are currently being had about a manufacturer match up to what a brand truly is. In this sense Oxford says, “It’s not about manipulation, it is actually about a restoration of the conversation and the tales that are being advised all over it.”

He provides that it is also about from time to time breaking the artifice and possessing entertaining. 

Controlling misconceptions all-around model

A big focus for marketers is serving to enterprise leaders to have an understanding of the price of model. When some main corporations do see the value and have designed roles like ‘Head of Brand’, others watch it simply as a “window dressing”. 

Oxford has found that an proof-primarily based method will help the C-Suite to realize just how critical brand is to their base line, to their men and women, to their customer interactions and their extended-phrase business good results. Ultimately, he claims, marketers will need to attraction to leaders with the issues that matter most to them in conditions of the direct impact on the base line and the immediate effects on culture.

“I uncover that when a marketer can get a client analyze accredited and commissioned, and they can then present irrefutable viewpoints and insights that can aid leaders recognise that a customer they imagined was rock reliable and here for the potential is essentially teetering on the edge of going somewhere else and the good reasons why. Primarily when it is not about overall performance of the products and it is not about necessarily provider in by itself but back again to a perception. It can be perceptions of whether or not a manufacturer is technologically up to date or is being forward of the sport.” 

Oxford then refers again to his favourite quotation from the Tv series Mad Gentlemen wherever advert guy Don Draper states, “If you do not like what is being claimed, alter the conversation.”

“I think that that is the crux of it for me, that a marketer’s work is to change the dialogue, but manufacturer is truly much more than a marketer has remit over. Brand is a little something that HR is associated in, that the CEO who sets the tone for the story of an organisation is component of.

“If a marketer is seeking to alter the dialogue, but the leaders are mounted in a model of the story that is no more time recent, it is likely to develop a fantastic rigidity. And so the ideal thing a marketer can do is basically get leaders about the line with the immediate effect of model, which is not fluffy, which is basically sharp as a knife when it’s excellent, and give them that proof.”


Scott Oxford is the companion and imaginative director of New Word Buy and the host of BrandJam.

Image by Possessed Images on Unsplash.


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