What is brand architecture?


The art and science of building a strong brand


You already know what a brand is. So, let’s start with architecture. Architecture is the art and technique of designing and building. Maybe you’re an architecture aficionado, or maybe you don’t give it much thought — but we bet you recognize the difference between good architecture and bad architecture when you experience them.

The same goes for brand architecture — the art of designing and defining the relationship between an organization’s brands. When brand architecture is strategic and well-designed, you intuitively understand the relationship between brands, for example a parent brand and its sub-brand. When it’s not, the relationship can be unclear or go unnoticed.

Why does an organization need more than just one brand?
As a business grows, it often finds itself needing sub-brands or a house of related brands to communicate with a range of audiences or to market different services and product lines. Brand architecture is a way to be intentional about how the organization shows up in the world.

Why is brand architecture important?

  • Establishes clear hierarchy for how products and services should be treated and where they fit within the organization’s portfolio
  • Drives consistent communications across diverse market segments
  • Optimizes marketing efficiency and performance
  • Supports cross-selling and launches of new products or services
  • Builds credibility and creates competitive differentiation or preference

When should you think about (or rethink) your brand architecture?

  • You underwent a significant merger or acquisition
  • A brand in your portfolio is losing relevance or is perceived negatively
  • You have too few brands (audience can’t distinguish between them)
  • You have too many brands (competing for attention and investment)
  • Internal programs, services or products are ready to become brands

Strong brand architecture starts with a blueprint
You wouldn’t break ground on a new corporate headquarters without an in-depth planning process that took into consideration everything from the environment to your goals for future growth. Solid brand architecture starts the same way. As experienced brand architects, we’d love to help you think it through. Drop us a note: hello@hatchtheagency.com

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