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You don’t just “start with the customer” anymore. It may sound like heresy, but a brand positioning that best motivates the team, that they can deliver, is the only one that will really work. Many advertising campaigns carry emotional punch but are hard to translate and hard for the average employee to relate to. The marketing team uses nuanced language and clever messaging, but the tens of thousands inside the building need memorable and actionable guides, a playbook for what daily activities are valuable and rewarded. They need the mantra of three to four powerful pillars that everyone knows and repeats on a daily basis, that can guide service delivery, product development. Walmart uses three very simple brand pillars, Starbucks six “differentiators” that made up a very directive internal playbook for change.

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