Brand – a critical aspect of business success

1 November 2016

Building a great brand is a critical aspect of business success, but how do you build a great brand and what’s the secret to staying great?

In today’s ever changing consumer market, trending cycles in the age of digital seem to be short lived and ruthless and expectations are continually increasing. It makes it hard to identify what it takes to make your brand stand out, increase salience and keep it front and centre in a competitive market.

For today’s businesses, the plethora of options for brand building can be confronting and overwhelming and can lose many businesses down the rabbit hole.

Cut through the noise and get back to basics.

Consider, why did you, or your company, get into business? What problem were they trying to solve? What’s in the DNA of the company and are the core pillars that have built the business and continue to remain critical to the company’s success.

It’s having a deep understanding of these “brand pillars”, and using them as a platform off which your company bases everything, that will be your formula to success.

At Police Health, a not-for-profit health insurer exclusive to the policing community, our vision and mission are both focused on the health and wellbeing of police and their families. Everything we do is about enhancing the mental and physical health and wellbeing of this community.

When revitalising our brand platform we didn’t lose sight of that, or our eighty year heritage. We articulated four brand pillars that each and every brand building activity leverages; Exclusivity (run by police for police), Understanding (those of us who have lived that life have an understanding of each other), Pedigree (it’s where we’ve come from and where we’ve stayed since 1935), Advocacy (our members are our strongest advocates).

Anything but ordinary

In 2015 we launched our “Anything but ordinary” brand platform. The insight underpinning the platform, and positioning line, is “If you had an ordinary job all you’d need is an ordinary health fund. But you don’t and that’s why you have us. ”

When developing this pivot to our marketing strategy we tested it and asked ourselves, could another brand put their mark on this? Is it unique to Police Health?

It’s critical that the brand is reflected through the organisation, so ensure you are collaborative across your stakeholder group. Brand building is not solely the job of the marketing team. Our product management function will reflect the brand pillar of understanding when developing and enhancing Police Health’s products by considering the unique needs of the police community – a higher level of benefits in Police Health’s Extras cover for psychology and podiatry for example.

Consider dissonance with the brand in another part of the organisation. It would be extremely damaging to a luxury brand if Procurement bought poor quality materials for Operations to make into the finished product.

It is an understanding of Police Health’s brand across the organisation that has resulted in Police Health enjoying healthy growth in a highly competitive marketplace. Police Health’s membership growth is at a greater percentage than the private health insurance industry average and in a market where other private health insurers are grappling with a contracting customer base.

Getting back to basics and developing a customer insight driven and authentic brand platform that focusses and guides the decisions made by the whole business is a critical aspect of business success.


Article by Caroline Patrick CPM, FAMI
General Manager, Marketing and Strategic Relationships

Police Health, a not-for-profit private health insurer exclusive to the policing community.


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