Seeking consensus among the masses is good when choosing a vacation destination (nobody wants to embark on new adventures with a disengaged or disgruntled traveler). It’s not particularly helpful when building brands. In fact, it can be detrimental.
Asking for a show of hands and getting less than 100 percent alignment does not constitute a trip back to the drawing board or appeasing every new idea. While thoughtful feedback is fuel for bettering just about anything, discernment on when and how to use that feedback is critical. The buck must stop with someone who is empowered to say – this is the direction we’re headed and why.
Seeking consensus sounds noble and democratic in theory. In practice, it sounds flat and uninteresting – the very things that branding and messaging initiatives seek to avoid – or reverse – in an attempt to differentiate.
In your quest to stand out, get comfortable pushing the envelope and, when necessary, reining things back in.
Not everyone in your organization will love the logo, the colors or the choice of type. They may not embrace every word of your message – and that’s okay. It’s not designed for them. It’s for your customer.
Your extended team can do amazing things when they help shape the brand rather than dictate it. Asking for or falling victim to the consensus paradox won’t create internal believers. To the contrary, it can create pockets of skeptics who can appreciate the attempt but can’t get over what the brand has become versus what it could’ve been.
Perhaps you’ve heard that a brand is more than a logo – and even more than a message. It’s about consistently exceeding expectations, providing exceptional experiences and connecting with stories well told. That’s where people fall in love with your brand. Your team included.