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Guide to Crafting a Powerful Brand Manifesto

A brand manifesto can showcase your company’s mission, vision, and values. Learn how to write an effective brand manifesto that sets your business apart.

Whether your business is already established or just getting started, appropriately marketing your company to prospective customers, clients, and partners is necessary for continued growth. One of the most fundamental pieces of a company, but something that's often overlooked, is the brand manifesto. Although a business manifesto should be as simple as possible, creating one that accurately displays what guides the company can be challenging.

With a few well-chosen sentences, you explicitly state to your employees and customers what your brand stands for. Employees will look to the company manifesto to validate and guide their specific operations. But more importantly, your customers and partners can use this statement to understand why your company operates the way it does.

Crafting a brand manifesto that speaks to your company's guiding values and principles--the things that set your brand apart from every other company and shape daily operations--will be an exercise that can help shape and define those principles. As you lay out what your brand stands for, you'll be working on listing what makes your company and brand what it is and what the company is working to accomplish.

If you’re ready to craft an impressive and effective brand manifesto, read on. We’ll cover the basics of brand manifestos and provide tips on how to make your statement stand out.

What is a brand manifesto?

A brand manifesto explains what your brand believes in and what it stands for. It's the basis from which you develop your company and brand, and it's something your company can refer to for guidance. Customers can also use it to understand what drives your company and differentiates it from competitors.

The pieces that make up a company manifesto are tied to the bigger goals and ambitions of the brand. Its simplicity tells a story of where the company wants to go and what will keep it on the path to reach that objective.

Brand manifesto vs. mission statement

A brand manifesto is an overarching document that defines the brand and company. One of these things is the mission statement. While a mission statement is often something that a company will refer to as what defines the business or brand, the brand manifesto will incorporate the mission statement and other components to explicitly state what the company is all about.

Understanding the role a mission statement plays in your company manifesto is important as you work to write the specific declarations that make up the manifesto. The mission statement can stand alone as a fundamental piece of what defines your company, but the manifesto needs to incorporate the mission statement to be complete.

Does your business need a brand manifesto?

How does your company answer this question: What is branding? While it may seem simple, the easiest way to answer it is with a company manifesto. The statements and principles in this document define exactly what makes your company and brand unique. Having and regularly referring to a business manifesto will enable your business to answer the question about its branding and maintain consistent business operations that are directly aligned with the statements and principles made in the document.

While many companies have been successful without a manifesto, there are aspects within every organization that can be considered a company manifesto. Taking the time to think about your brand and develop a brand manifesto can be an effective way to help define the company. It can also be used to express to your customers what your brand and company stand for and why you operate the way you do.

In turn, this allows you to create effective marketing strategies, strengthen your brand's identity, grow a loyal following, and so much more.

Top components of a brand manifesto

Three key components make up a brand manifesto and emotional story: vision statement, mission statement, and core company values.

While each of these components can stand alone and be presented to others to help define your company, how they interrelate represents your company's brand manifesto.

A vision statement is what describes your company's goal. This goal can be what you hope to achieve or want your company to become. It drives everything you do at your company because every action is taken to achieve that objective.

The mission statement explains what your company is and why it does what it does. It describes the company's operations, focusing on activities carried out to achieve the goals set in place.

Your brand's values are the fundamental principles defining how your business operates. Everyone has their own set of core values, and a company's values are no different. Every choice your organization makes should be guided by your values.

By developing and following your company manifesto, you can ensure brand consistency. If the daily decisions at a company align with the business manifesto, the company will remain on the same path that was chosen, ensuring employees are familiar with where the company is going and customers can rely on the business to not be in a constant state of disruptive change.

How to create your own brand manifesto

If you’re interested in making a brand manifesto, here are 5 steps to help you get started:

  1. Your company manifesto will go much deeper than just the basics of branding. Because this document is essential to defining your brand and your company, creating it needs to be approached with intention. That said, there are 3 key parts of making the business manifesto.
  2. The first thing is to understand the purpose of your business. This goes much deeper than simply selling goods or services and looks at what you hope to do with the company. You need to understand what the purpose of your company and brand is from a more global perspective.
  3. When crafting a brand manifesto, the next thing is understanding your target market. This audience will be those who work internally with the company and those outside the company. You want employees to know and appreciate what they're working toward. Customers and partners should be able to look at the manifesto and know exactly what they're getting from your company.
  4. Finally, you need to write it down. It may take several iterations to achieve the right mix of words and phrases to accurately describe what defines your brand and its purpose in the world. But once an appropriate business manifesto has been crafted, the work is done. A key aspect of any brand manifesto is that it's not fluid and changeable, which is vital for maintaining brand consistency.
  5. Once your brand manifesto has been developed, it needs to be implemented. By using the principles and statements to shape ordinary business goals and actions, your company will demonstrate that it takes the manifesto seriously. Your employees will use these statements to guide their work, and your clients and customers will look to see how well you live up to your guiding principles when they choose to do business with you.

Best practices for writing your brand manifesto

The best way to understand what a brand manifesto is and how to craft one is to look at brand manifesto examples. Finding examples of existing and persuasive manifestos can help you better appreciate the pieces that make up a business manifesto.

As you look at brand manifesto examples, pay close attention to your current understanding of what the company is about. By doing this, you can see how a specific company's manifesto has embodied itself in the daily operations of a business you're familiar with. By using these examples as a reference, the questions about what defines your business can be better answered.

In addition to looking at examples, other best practices for creating a high-quality brand manifesto include:

  • Use storytelling techniques to write your brand story and help readers move through the manifesto.
  • Write in 2nd or 3rd person to establish a closer bond between your company and the reader.
  • Be authentic and true to your business. Focus on what matters the most to your organization and avoid trying to portray something your company isn't.
  • Include a call to action in your brand manifesto to drive people to different components of your business.
  • Maintain branding to ensure consistency across various channels.

Enhance your branding with a brand manifesto

When building a strong digital brand, a company manifesto can be invaluable. For businesses, providing employees with detailed statements defining the guiding principles of your organization can ensure everyone within the company remains focused and on the same page. More importantly, your manifesto will give your customers and partners the information they need to understand how and why your business operates. Knowing what makes a compelling brand manifesto and its key components can be instrumental in your efforts to create one.

Once your own brand manifesto is finalized, it's time to share it with the world. Use Mailchimp to get the word out via email marketing, targeted social media ads, or local postcards. Plus, leverage our assortment of tools to analyze the performance of your campaigns.

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