How the Worlds Most Enduring Brand Bonds with its People

At Ad:Tech Sydney, I went to an interesting presentation about rebranding interesting.  The presenter, Ray Bull,  has a background in design, spoke about the brand design of one his clients, (the Church) and the results.  When talking about a brand, it is important to be on the same page.  Everyone has a different interpretation of what a brand is .  Ray confirmed the definition of the brand as the below:.

Brand – all the feelings, thoughts and perceptions people have about products, services and people.

Sydney Opera House

Ray’s client was the Christianity outreach Centre.  Ray is passionate about his faith and also brands, so he wanted to share some of the insights from his professional career.

32% of people associate themselves with Christianity. However, church life has changed and the brand did not reflect this.

What are the components that make up a belief system?

  • The Creation Story (Genesis)
  • The Creed (Gospel Message)
  • Icons (Cross)
  • Rituals (Churches)
  • Non believers (the Pagans)
  • The sacred words (Scripture)
  • The leader  (Jesus)

When combined these 7 components often form a powerful emotional connection “a tribal like affinity” with a brand. Ray was asked to help rebrand Christian outreach centre called Christian Outreach Centre, also shortened to COC.
There were some issues with the current brand:

  • There was a problem with the name  of the Christian outreach centre
  • Total lack of clarity
  • No shared vision
  • There was no strategy, marketing or communication
  • Very low brand awareness
  • Total lack of internal engagement – the pastors not that engaged with the brand

So how do you change a brand and not change its unique selling proposition?

1. Hillsong
2. Old Spice
The two were great examples of changing their brand and positioning it in a different way.

What brand architecture are we going to settle on?  Branded house like Channel 7 or the house of House of Brands.  All sorts of brands, do not they are related to wone another

Brand Journey

The next is the endorsed models- all the brands they endorse. There were some major problems with the Christian outreach center. There was a lot of baggage attached to the brand.

What brand should CoC become?

For example does it want to be a house of brands, endorsed brands etc?
It was important for the outreach center to be an endorsed brand.  Ray explained the concept of an endorsed brand using Batman and Robin.  Batman is the hero.  Ray wanted the local church or franchise to be the hero.  The brand needs to be supportive of it.

In the case of this example, Ray helped rebrand Christian Outreach Centre (CoC) to International Network of Churches  (INC).  INC is the Robin  (of Batman and Robin) pushing forward the Nowra City Church. After the reveal of the new brand, they wanted to manage the brand and get all the key stakeholders.  Getting the right people on board.

Actionable Insight:

  • There is no one process
  • Story is King – the brand does not live in the boardroom, don’t just preach with them
  • Servant leadership – if you want to be the greatest, have to be the servant of all.  Not about telling it down, it is about serving the customers
  • Purpose Driven – It is not about manipulating people.  How can we improve that persons life, not profit driven
  • Sing from the same hymn sheet

The presentation was an interesting example of rebranding and how complex it can be, especially for larger organisations.

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