Build A Brand Legacy
How do you build and maintain a brand legacy?
What do leaders often get wrong in building a brand?
Mark Miller and Lucas Conley are the authors of Legacy in the Making: Building a Long-Term Brand to Stand Out in a Short-Term World. Miller is the founder of The Legacy Lab, a research and consulting practice, and the chief strategy officer at Team One. Conley is the executive editor of The Legacy Lab and a former researcher for The Atlantic and staff writer for Fast Company.
5 Brand Building Errors
What do most leaders get wrong when they’re thinking about legacy?
We’ve learned a lot about how leaders build and maintain brand legacies since Mark founded The Legacy Lab in 2012. Over the years, we’ve identified five things traditional business leaders tend to do wrong today:
1) Think institutionally: Traditional brand leaders buy in to management systems and institutional processes with the goal of keeping up with market trends.
2) Lean into attitude over action: Traditional brand leaders imagine their brands first from the outside in, believing that what they say and how they posture matters more than what they do.
3) Practice command and control: Traditional brand leaders hoard information and tell customers what to do, striving for category dominance and sales superiority.
4) Follow category orthodoxy: Traditional brand leaders focus on mastering rules (e.g., “business is about making profits”) and take conventional wisdom for granted (e.g., “there are no profits in altruism”), all in the interest of maintaining the status quo.
5) Evolve episodically: Traditional brand leaders tend to grow stale by repeating the past (rarely innovating) or lose their identity by renouncing it (innovating everything at once). Both are examples of episodic evolution.
Once these were the accepted rules of brand-building. In the modern era these methods now amount to short-term thinking. And while short-term thinking may sound appropriate for our short-term world, we learned that it’s actually the long-term thinkers who make faster, sharper decisions. This is because, no matter the market trends, long-term thinkers know where they’re going. This counterintuitive insight—that the best short-term strategy is a long-term one—is at the heart of our book.
Your book highlights various leading organizations. How did you go about choosing them?