We’re going to show you how to define your brand mission, and come up with a Brand Mission Statement in just 3 easy steps.
“Why do you do what you do?”
If someone asks you this question about your brand, and it makes you feel on the spot, panic, pause and flounder for words. We’re afraid you’re in dire need of creating and refining your brand mission statement, stat.
Alternatively, if you start reeling off a 5 minute script, it’s also time to go back to the drawing board.
Your brand mission is why you do what you do, and your brand mission statement is a one or two-sentence statement that tells people the answer to this.
Essentially, it should be short and snappy.
A banging brand mission statement will help to connect your customers to your brand values. It can be made a big deal out of, but it doesn’t have to be mission impossible to get there!
What is Your Brand Mission?
Your brand mission instantly articulates “where are we aiming to be” but without all the ‘5 year plan’ crap. It’s a concise round up of your brand.
Brand missions aren’t just for big brands with hundreds of employees. Although they are absolutely essential for businesses of that size, even if you’re a one person team , it’s important for you to have a brief, simple declaration that clearly communicates to people:
- What you do
- The benefit or value of the service you offer
- The vision you have for your brand.
Your brand mission takes your brand values and compresses them into one, easy to digest sentence, without the fluff.
List them out on a piece of paper, and then put them together in the same sentence. This is a brand mission, and what we’re going to get to by the end of this post.
It’s what you set out to do, what you’re aiming for, and what you envision sticking to in the future.
You might hear this being referred to as your brand vision, and also your brand purpose. They all end up at the same point, they all answer the question “Why do you do what you do? And where are you aiming to be?”
Here’s a great example of a brand mission statement in action;
Telsa are a great example of a company with a super strong brand mission statement.
Tesla’s founder and CEO, Elon Musk, has missions on the more imaginative end of the scale than your average company, like … putting humans on Mars. He’s stated that he won’t be happy until we’ve ‘escaped’ earth and colonised Mars.
Big vision from the electric vehicle mogul.
Tesla wants their mission to make such an impact that they have dedicated a page on their website explaining all about it, but the statement remains simple.
“To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”
The language they have chosen to use in this statement is commanding, forward thinking, and visionary.
Let’s take a closer look at the words they have used;
- Accelerate. This has connotations of speed, power, taking things up a notch. An important and clever part of their brand mission statement, as the first car they brought out was a high end, electric sports car. Without ‘accelerate’, their brand mission would have got lost, and the connotations linked with the word sustainable would have taken over and given a totally different impression of the brand.
- Transition. Elon Musk is determined, through Tesla, to change the way we live and the world as we know it.
- Sustainable. Tesla’s USP is the fact they are an electric car, providing a more environmentally friendly mode of transport to help save our planet. Sustainable also has connotations with ‘safe’, which is the main thing you want in a car.
It says everything you need to know about Tesla.
And that’s exactly how you want your brand mission statement to be. Succinct, yet powerful.
Why Do You Need a Brand Mission Statement?
Your brand mission statement communicates your answer to the question ‘What are we aiming for?” to your customers and staff in one sentence, it helps to connect people to your brand values.
Remember, your brand mission isn’t just for your customers, it also tells your staff what your values are, and is a guiding message for the service that they’re going to provide.
The brand mission statement needs to be an easy to comprehend, down to brass tacks, sentence or two which encapsulates your brand values, and tells people what it is that you do.
Coming up with a brand mission can sound intimidating. It can feel like being put on the spot.
What if it doesn’t sound good enough? What are we even aiming for here?
It can be easy to get worked up over what is essentially one sentence, sure, it’s an important one, but you know what your brand is, and what you set out to do.
We’re here to show you a simple way of how to get there.
But whatever you do, don’t underestimate this little sentence. It’s small, but mighty (just like Canny)
This statement is a powerful marketing tool, not only for gaining more customers, but attracting (and retaining!) a great team of staff.
People seek out their dream job opportunities in companies whose values align with their own. Do you want your brand to be somebody’s dream job? So tell them why it should be!
Having your brand mission statement written down somewhere you can see it everyday is a great way to keep you and your team focussed on, well…your mission!
It’s also a great starting point for any mood boards or brainstorming activities when you feel things need a little refresh, or to get things back to base.
So How Do You Make a Brand Mission Statement?
The whole process of creating your brand mission isn’t something to overly complicate.
Coming up with a flighty, pretentious brand mission statement because you think it will make you sound better, just isn’t going to do you any favours.
Be honest, be true to yourself and your brand, and most importantly, stick to your word.
If you are providing a luxury service, shout it from the rooftops!
“We produce exclusive items to enhance your life”
However if your service and prices are more humble, go with just that.
“We provide an affordable service that people can rely on”
Sure, these seem like pretty straightforward statements, but it’s your job to add some pizzazz!
Ikea’s mission statement is “to create a better everyday life for the many people”.
Ikea’s price point is affordable for most people at most stages of their life.
Pretty much every University flat in the UK will be kitted out in the simple, Swedish furnishings. But Ikea isn’t simply a budget friendly choice for students, it keeps to its promise of creating a better everyday life for many people.
The designs are functional, hardwearing and they do create a better everyday life.
I struggle to believe not even A list celebrities with millions in the bank can resist an Ikea trip! (Surely one of the best parts about moving house is the obligatory pilgrimage to Ikea?)
They serve their customers cost effective, well made, long lasting products. This is reflected throughout the whole brand, from the furniture, to the blue bags that are a godsend when you’re moving house, to the hot dogs.
(Unfortunately we can’t confirm the hot dogs are long lasting. They are wolfed down in seconds, with a side of meatballs.)
So let’s get started with the basics. Your brand mission needs to cover the answers to the following questions.
- Who are you?
- What do you do?
- Why do you do it?
Remember, this doesn’t have to be a dissertation. A short and snappy brand mission does the job a lot better than a paragraph that rambles on.
You want this statement to make an impact. Don’t worry that it doesn’t detail every single cool thing that your business does in one go, there’s plenty of other ways you can communicate those cool things. Your Brand Mission is there just to say what you’re all about.
Still struggling? Lets go a bit deeper.
Who Do I Serve?
Use your customer personas for this, this is ultimately your target market.
What characteristics do they have? What are their wants and needs?
If you haven’t made your customer personas yet, we go more in depth on how to create these in our customer personas blog post!
Why Do I Care?
Don’t worry, we’re not asking for an in depth, profound sentiment. A simple explanation of why you’ve chosen to work in the area you do, will be just fine. Care about the environment and this is reflected in your business? Great, you’re sustainable.
What Do I Provide?
For this point, you can either focus on your personal expertise, or the service that your company provides.
If you’re a one man band or a small team, don’t panic – this is actually a great point to focus on! You provide a personal service and the customer will always be dealing directly with the person on the job, and also the person in charge.
If this is the case, just make sure you don’t solely focus on “we are a one person company” – remember to leave yourself room for future growth!
What Benefits Do I Give My Clients?
What problems do you relieve your customers of when they use your service?
If you were a fast food restaurant, go a bit deeper than “our burgers taste great”.
You should be thinking more along the lines of “you won’t be hungry and we’ll satisfy your cravings for some good ol’ grease!”
What problem are you solving for your customer?
Think of the emotions they feel before the problem, and then after you’ve come along and solved it for them. Your Brand Story will help you define what emotions your service sparks in people.
Take the key beats from your Brand Story, which emotive words can be highlighted from these? These words are perfect to feed into your mission statement.
What Do I Offer That’s Different to My Competitors?
First things first, go back to your Brand Strategy and spend some time focussing on your USP. What you do differently and what sets you apart is the heart of this point.
But of course, to showcase your USP, you (obviously) need to take a look at what your competitors are offering (and what they’re not) otherwise, how will you know? Go back to your findings from your competitor analysis, and work from there.
The 3 Step Guide to Creating Your Brand Mission Statement
Now you should have quite a bit down on paper to work with, and have made some headway with what you’re trying to get across.
Refine the points you’ve just made by highlighting just one key word from each point you’ve made – or you can try to sum that whole point up with a single word that hasn’t been used.
Think back to the example we made earlier, if you care about the planet and provide an eco friendly service, sustainable, would be the word to use.
Now, let’s focus on our three key questions to answer. The 3 simple steps to get to your final Brand Mission Statement.
- Why are you in your business?
- Who are your customers?
- What makes you different to your competitors / how do you stand out?
Avoid unnecessary descriptions and long, fancy words. There’s plenty of space left to ham things up in other areas of your branding and marketing strategies!
Your Brand Mission Statement should be outcome-oriented, with a focus on what you achieve, results that you get, or actions that you take alongside your values.
Let’s keep things short, sweet, and concise.
Launching Your Brand Mission Statement in 3 Easy Steps
After creating your mission statement, read it aloud to yourself a few times. Does it feel right? Does it communicate what you want to say accurately? Have friends and family read it. Read it to the dog. Do they get it?
Get ready to be hit with some constructive criticism. If they’re looking a bit confused and some extra explanation is needed to get across what you are trying to say, be prepared to go back to the drawing board and refine it once again before finalising.
Remember, your brand mission needs to be understood by everyone who reads it, not just everyone who works in your industry.
From these steps you should now be left with a short n’ snappy Brand Mission Statement, ensuring anyone who needs to know about your brand, gets it in one. We go more in depth in our downloadable resource Brand Strategy Made Simple.
Have you created your Brand Mission Statement using our guide?