Branding is the key.

Willie Lyons

Trustee, Cricket Live Foundation

April 2016

 

Branding is all about how your organization is perceived.

 

In its simplest form, a brand is a gut feeling about an organization. Branding is strategic. Marketing is tactical. In order to grow a powerful brand you have to determine your overall strategy before you can start; Who are you? What do you stand for? What are your core values?

 

Many non-profits continue to use their brands primarily as a fundraising tool, but the true value in building a brand comes from developing a broader, more strategic approach to managing a brand, to create greater social impact. This is the key. Non-profit brands are visible everywhere and some are the most widely recognized brands in the world, some are more trusted by the public than the best-known for-profit brands. That is why it is important to explore the wider more strategic roles a brand can play i.e driving long-term social change, while strengthening the organization’s identity.

 

Developing a brand is not an overnight occurrence. It takes time and consistency. Cricket Live Foundation is lucky. Unlike so many organizations it has one sole focus – to develop the life skills and educate underprivileged children. The fortunate thing is, the vehicle being used to drive this sole focus, happens to be a game which brings millions people together from across the globe. 

 

By having a clear mission/strategy, our Foundation is able to easily communicate our values and objectives through various channels. After having worked for the Advertising Agency, Saatchi and Saatchi, it has been interesting for me to involve myself with a Charitable Organisation, and use my past experiences to develop a Brand Strategy for the Foundation. I have realised that there should never be any difference in approach when thinking about the branding of a Charitable Organisation, because the ultimate objective is the same; create a brand that is trusted, recognisable and appealing to the general public. 

 

We are relatively small at the moment, but I am confident that our simple, clear approach to strategy and branding will allow us to develop into a brand which will be recognised world wide. 

 

When we started working on our Brand Strategy, we were reminded by a colleague of ours, of the words of Dwight Eisenhower; “Plans are nothing. Planning is everything”. In other words, the process of planning is a lot more important than the plan itself. If you can apply this to your day to day life, your business or in our case, our charitable organisation, success and clarity is inevitable.

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