Brand Experience Toolkit


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Brand Experience Toolkit

  1. 1. The Brand Experience toolkit [August 2007]
  2. 2. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Table of Contents 1.0 History of the AIESEC Brand 1.1 What is a brand? 1.2 Why do we have a global brand? 1.3 Brand Promise vs. Brand Experience: an evolution 2.0 The Brand Experience 2.1 An overview 2.2 Our competitors 2.3 Our target audiences 2.4 Physical manifestations 2.5 Benefits 2.6 Differentiator 2.7 Essence 3.0 Filter tool – how to use the Brand Experience in practice 3.1 Assessing your results 3.2 Finding support Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  3. 3. 1.0 – History of the AIESEC brand Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] History of the AIESEC brand The global AIESEC brand as we know it today was launched by AIESEC International in 2004. The first Brand Toolkit included explanations on what is a brand, why we need one and the steps in order to achieve that, including our Brand Promise, visual guidelines and marketing campaign. 1.1 What is a brand? A brand is more than just a logo, slogan or a colour scheme; it is the image and reputation that we want others to associate with our organization. But, a brand is also more than just the image that we want others to have of us; it is also a description of the organization that we want to be. A brand is an expression of your actions and what you do every day. In AIESEC, our global brand is represented through our living The AIESEC Way. Our “Brand Experience” is the experience we want our stakeholders (members, supporters and enablers) to live when they interact with AIESEC. The closer we can make this experience to the entirety of our Brand Experience the more we are strengthening our global brand every day. 1.2 Why do we have a global brand? Having a global brand allows AIESEC (1) to be more consistent and credible, (2) to attract more stakeholders and give AIESEC a clear competitive advantage; (3) to attract the right stakeholders and to set the right expectations; and (4) to align the organization to globally leverage the AIESEC Experience. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  4. 4. 1.0 – History of the AIESEC brand Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] 1.3 Brand Promise vs. Brand Experience: an evolution The Brand Promise introduced in 2004 was the start of the branding initiative from AIESEC International, bringing the network together to have one visual identity and synergizing messages across the network. While the earlier brand promise helped quite a bit to align the organization to be transmitting common messages, it was difficult to apply to products and also quite internally focused, not providing reasons for partners to engage with AIESEC rather than our competition. The brand promise was made up of words that we felt best described AIESEC, but there was no clear plan on how to use it in practice. Now a few years later, we see the need to evolve this further in order for it to be used in practice, including how it should be used in relation to product development and messaging—a crucial step on the path to creating a strong global brand for AIESEC. As a result, with the help of consultants from Unilever, we now have what we call the Brand Experience. This methodology will serve as a tool that can be used to filter everything we do quickly and easily to understand its alignment to our brand, which in the end supports in its strengthening. Unlike the brand promise which was internally focused, the Brand Experience first considers the outside environment and looks inward, reflecting how our stakeholders actually experience our brand when they interact with AIESEC, and how we do things differently than our competitors. By being conscious of this we can ensure that we are strengthening our global brand in all actions we take, meeting the needs of our stakeholders and putting us ahead of our competitors at the same time. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  5. 5. 2.0 – The Brand Experience Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] The Brand Experience Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  6. 6. 2.1 – The Brand Experience: an overview Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] The Brand Experience: an overview The Brand Experience is a simple way to understand how our target audiences (members, supporters and enablers) experience (or interact with) the AIESEC brand. The interactions and touch points they have with AIESEC will shape the impression of what AIESEC is to them, and by being conscious of this we can manage the kind of experience we would like our target audiences to have with AIESEC. The Brand Experience has several elements that will be discussed in more detail in this toolkit. They include: • Our competitors (organizations offering similar products to our target audiences) • Target audiences (our potential members, enablers and supporters) • Physical manifestations (the first interaction point to AIESEC for our target audiences) • Benefits (what our target audiences get out of engaging with AIESEC) • Our Values (reflective of The AIESEC Way) • Discriminator (what distinguishes us from our competitors) • Essence (what we do in AIESEC, what we are about) The next few pages of this toolkit will explain each section of the Brand Experience in more detail. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  7. 7. 2.2 – Our Competitors Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Our Competitors Our competitors are other organizations that offer similar experiences to our target audiences as we do. They may be slightly or even very similar to us, based on what they offer. These include organizations offering: • Work abroad opportunities • Volunteer abroad opportunities • Cultural experiences • Skills development • Networks Although there may be a few common competitors for AIESEC across this globe (ie) IAESTE for internships or JCI for volunteer opportunities, your direct competitors will differ from country to country, and perhaps even from city to city. It is important that you are aware of such similar organizations and the work they are doing so that you are able to identify how AIESEC differs from their activities and what we offer to our target audiences vs. what our competitors offer to them. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  8. 8. 2.3 – Our target audiences Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Our target audiences As seen from our Balance Scorecard, our target audiences can be divided into three distinct groups of people: • Members • Enablers (TN takers, mentors and learning/content partners), and • Supporters (financial and in-kind partners, Board of Advisors) The kinds of characteristics we would be looking for in potential members, enablers and supporters include: Characteristics for potential members: • Young people – recent graduates and students • Youth interested in world issues • Those who enjoy challenges • Open minded active learners • Those with an interest in leadership development • Passionate and determined • Those looking for learning and development opportunities Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  9. 9. 2.3 – Our target audiences Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Characteristics for potential enablers: • TN takers o Companies expanding to other countries o Companies that needs and employees with specific characteristics o Companies with strong CSR or a willingness to start o Issues focused; market leaders • Learning/content partners o Organizations working with issues relevant in society o Global organizations (with global reach) o Research-based organizations o Individuals with specific skills/knowledge/experience in a particular field • Mentors o HR companies/specialists o University professors o Alumni o Industry specialists Characteristics for potential supporters: • Sponsors, financial and in-kind o Organizations working on similar issues relevant in society o Companies/organizations that are working with youth o Organizations with the same end benefit • Board of advisors o Industry specialists o Alumni o High profile people Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  10. 10. 2.4 – Physical manifestations Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Physical manifestations This layer includes all the external touch points (or interaction points) our target audiences have with AIESEC. Thus, their first interaction point with AIESEC will affect how they experience our brand. This layer includes things such as our marketing materials and visual branding guidelines (including our logo), but also extends to much more than this. The first interaction point that our target audiences have with AIESEC including everything from physical meetings to our website, conferences, even our Code of Ethics, all shape the way our target audiences will understand AIESEC. Please note: the visual guidelines are currently being refreshed. The newest version is expected to be released in September 2007. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  11. 11. 2.5 – Benefits Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Benefits Benefits are what our target audiences (or stakeholders) get out of engaging with AIESEC. While the benefits are the same for all target audience groups, the reasons why they are a benefit for each target audience differs based on the different “experiences” that these audiences have with our brand. These are the benefits that our target audiences experience when they interact with AIESEC. • Societal impact • Personal and professional development • International experience • Global network Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  12. 12. 2.5 – Benefits Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Although they are benefits for different reasons, the above four are benefits for all of our stakeholders, or target audiences. The chart below explains this in more detail. Societal impact Benefit for members Benefit for supporters Benefit for enablers To have an impact on a certain Knowledge sharing Leadership development issue Feeling of supporting to make an Feeling of contributing to having an Learning opportunity impact in society impact on society through others Providing the same experience to others Personal and professional development Benefit for members Benefit for supporters Benefit for enablers Self development (leadership Supporting development of others Access to top talent; having top development, self-discovery, Feeling of supporting to make an talent in their organization skill building) impact on society Feeling of supporting to make an impact on others Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  13. 13. 2.5 – Benefits Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Global network Benefit for members Benefit for supporters Benefit for enablers Peers, alumni, businesses all Connect to youth around the world, Alumni, youth around the world, over the world other organizations other organizations International experience Benefit for members Benefit for supporters Benefit for enablers Exchange opportunities, global Interaction with members who Diversity in workforce learning environment, have international experience Branding and positioning international conferences, etc. (open minded/worldly) Interaction with members who Branding and positioning have international experience International conference (open minded/worldly) involvement Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  14. 14. 2.6 – Our values Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Our Values Our values are an important part of the Brand Experience. The organizational values defined in The AIESEC Way were not made to be written up on a wall and forgotten about. They dictate how we should act according to our value system for the organization. Our values are also what our target audiences experience and live when they interact with AIESEC, thus they definitely determine how others view us and experience our brand. Our values Imagine a TN taker hears all about the ambitious top talented youth that • Demonstrating integrity exist in AIESEC during his first interaction at a conference and decides to taken on an intern for himself. Imagine that intern meets all his • Acting sustainably expectations of being a bright, ambitious and passionate young person • Activating leadership that makes a big difference in the company. The impression that TN taker will have of AIESEC will be quite good, because of the way he • Enjoying participation experienced our brand. Now imagine the same situation but in a negative way, this is not how we want our stakeholders to experience AIESEC. • Living diversity That is why values are so important and interlinked with our brand. • Striving for excellence Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  15. 15. 2.7 – Differentiator Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Differentiator Youth driven impactful experience Our differentiator is what makes us unique, or simply put, what sets us apart from the competition. This layer is very much linked with the next (the essence). While the essence may not be unique to our competitors, our differentiator is the unique point—how we do what we do differently than our competitors. Through the result of discussions held at the Global Brand Principles meeting held in May 2007, three concrete things that combined set AIESEC apart include: • Youth driven – the concept that AIESEC is run by youth for youth • Integrated experience – the AIESEC experience comprised of leadership opportunities, an international exchange and a global learning environment • Impact/activating positive leadership – making a positive impact on society To express these three differentiators in one sentence we have come up with the phrase: Youth driven impactful experience. Each part of this phrase has a strong meaning behind it. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  16. 16. 2.7 – Differentiator Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Youth driven This emphasizes energy, passion, emotion, and leadership or leading, essentially what AIESEC is about. It also reinforces the fact that we are youth run. Impactful This is about the kind of experience that our stakeholders have when they engage with AIESEC, and the positive impact it can have on them and/or on society. Experience The complete yet individual experience that our stakeholders have with AIESEC from a member’s AIESEC experience to a TN taker’s experience with an intern to a sponsor’s experience at a conference. This experience draws together all aspects of the AIESEC experience – leadership opportunities, international exchange and a global learning environment. What the differentiator is not This sentence is not meant to be used explicitly to explain AIESEC. The essence behind this statement is what matters. When you are explaining what sets AIESEC apart these are elements that should come up in your explanation, though the actual phrase “youth driven impactful experience” is not meant to be a slogan. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  17. 17. 2.8 – Essence Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] Essence This is the essence of what we do as an organization. This may not be different to our competitors, but it is the centre of our actions. Our differentiator is how we do this differently to our competitors. Our essence is taken from the essence of the brand promise: activating leadership. AIESEC is about providing the platform and necessary tools for youth to develop themselves, so that they can have a positive impact on their environments. Through activating leadership we also want to communicate the important role the individual plays in the experience - the self- driven element. We do this through the concept of AIESEC as a platform of opportunities from which individuals can drive their own experience. The essence of activating leadership can be captured in three simple elements: • AIESEC is the platform - individuals drive their own experience • We help individuals to both develop and discover their potential • Our ambition is to develop people that will have a positive impact on society Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  18. 18. 3.0 – The filter tool Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] The Filter tool – how to use the Brand Experience in practice In order to use the Brand Experience in practice, a filter tool has been created which is a simple set of questions that you can apply to any product or message to check if it is aligned to the Brand Experience or not. If it is not, using this tool will also help to indicate what areas need to be improved in order for your product/messaging to be strengthening our brand. To use this tool, you will need to have your product in question with you. Go through the series of questions below and answer them using a “traffic light” system: green if the answer if completely true, red if it is completely untrue and yellow if it is somewhere in the middle. The Filter tool questions: Question Green Yellow Red 1. Is it true to the essence (activating leadership)? 2. Is it true to our differentiator (youth driven impactful experience) and thus different to those offered by our competitors? 3. Is it consistent with or not contradicting any of our values? 4. Is it reflecting the international development experience in The AIESEC Way (exchange, leadership, global learning environment) and our current organizational strategy? 5. Is it reflecting at least two primary benefits? 6. Is it adhering to the visual guidelines? Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
  19. 19. 3.1 – Assessing your results Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007] 3.1 Assessing your results After going through the filter tool above with a product, idea for a product or general messaging you should have a grid of green/yellow and/or red that will give you an indication of how closely your assessment reflects the Brand Experience. For products with many green’s, this is a very good representation of the Brand Experience and will help to strengthen our global brand. For products with many yellows, this should be an indicator that some parts of the product need to be worked on a bit more in order to better reflect the whole of our Brand Experience and contribute to strengthening our brand. Use the Brand Experience filter tool to help you identify what areas exactly need a bit of work in order to be more reflective of our ideal Brand Experience, and strive for this. For products with many red’s, first consider how much this product is reflecting our Brand Experience. If it is not, then it is not the ideal way we would want our target audiences to interact with AIESEC. In this case, consider the need of this product in your LC or MC and work out a plan to ensure the product will be redefined in the future, towards our Brand Experience, or consider phasing out the product altogether, by finding other more aligned products to help meet the financial resources brought in by your non- aligned product. 3.2 Finding support The Global Communication Crew can help you to use this tool to help strengthen our brand. Check out the Global Branding Community on for more information. Brand Experience Toolkit [August 2007]
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