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Brand Essence: Why Should You Care for It?

Difference between brand value and brand essence.


If you’ve read a thing or two about establishing your brand’s identity – brand essence is what helps your brand climb the stairs to your consumer’s heart. It’s the emotional feeling your consumers pair your brand with, which seals the deal in their subconscious. But wait – where are we on the difference between brand value and brand essence then?

I get it – and your concern is valid. What are brand values supposed to mean if the ‘essence’ is the real deal behind a good brand positioning strategy? I’ll get to that soon, but first, let’s talk about brand essence in detail, and it’ll all clear up in a second.




What is Brand Essence?


In its literal meaning, the word ‘essence’ refers to a person’s or a thing's core values, which can help determine its character. If you were to pair it with the word ‘brand’ – these simple values are what practically ‘define’ your brand.

According to Kirk Philips, it is an attribute that is unique for your business only and does well to describe the ‘intent’ or ‘purpose’ behind the establishment of your brand in a phrase or a short sentence.

When you start to think about your brand’s brand essence, suddenly, the brand starts to come to life. You would begin visualizing it as a person instead of an inanimate logo.

In other words, ‘essence’ wraps up or ‘perfectly sums up’ your brand to your audience – and it helps them feel and understand what your brand stands for. Through these values, you can help your brand establish a unique identity and differentiate yourself from competitors in the market.

Is There a Difference Between Brand Value and Brand Essence?

If you’ve had that question – I have to agree – you’re on to something here. The significant difference between brand value and brand essence is that while brand values are based on reliable and firm principles, brand essence is based on emotional and heartfelt feelings that revolve around the brand, ever since its start.

I’ve got one more difference here – your brand’s essence is supposed to stay the same throughout a business’s life. On the contrary, core brand values remain the same, yet minor changes or additions to these values are likely as you progress in the market.



To give you a more understandable brand essence concept, let me show you some examples of brand values and brand essence individually. This simple activity helps you distinguish between these terms while your business is still in the definition phase. Let’s jump straight into it.


Brand Essence Examples:


Give these ‘brand essence’ examples a look. These are some of the top-tier brands in the market right now, and you’ll get a rough idea as to how you can accomplish something similar:

  • Walt Disney: Magical

  • Apple: Think Different

  • Nike: Authentic Athletic Performance

  • FedEx: Safe

From these brand essence examples, you would see how you, as a consumer, can perceive these individual brands as they are putting in their honest ‘soul’ and ‘emotions’ in making their customers’ dreams come true. Think about it again – “Think Different” – this simple phrase resonates with me, and this spark is what you’re looking for in your brand loyalists.

Using these companies as inspiration– think to yourself, what does your business mean to you? What should your customers feel when they’re reminded of your brand? That is the moment for you to shine and jump on the opportunity to find the perfect one!

Brand Value Examples:

Conversely, brand values are what you believe in, and here’s a shortlist of a few of them:

  • Integrity

  • Honesty

  • Respect

  • Leadership

Do you see it now? Apple, Google, Facebook – whichever company you pick – these brands have associated themselves with these values. Why did I get these three companies in mind? It’s what these companies have always put out to the public, and this is what they stand for.

Are the confusions clearing up on the difference between brand value and brand essence? I’m confident you’re ready to set out on your quest to find both these useful assets and explore them for your own business to flourish. Both values and essence contribute to making a business successful and prosperous, but only if their foundation is laid on pure honesty and not based on competing with the other companies.

Final Thoughts:


Here’s the thing, sales happen not on the shelf but inside the customer’s mind. And most of the decisions made in the customers’ minds are at the subconscious level. – ‘People may forget what you said, but they never forget how you made them feel.’ That is exactly why you should care about your brand essence.

Brand essence is the feeling that your customers and prospective clients are left with after engaging with your brand. Your brand essence will undoubtedly help you gain prospective clients because they will ‘feel’ your business background on a personal level, not just because they want to buy your products. I’m confident you’re ready to get on your foot and start exploring your brand’s identity on your own.

So now that you know about brand essence go ahead and envision the one for your business.


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