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Don’t Write Another Piece of Copy Until You Know Your Brand Essence.

Stephanie Gunther

Stephanie Gunther

CEO & Creative Director Wax Creek

One brand idea. 3 ways.

Today let’s contemplate Brand Essence. Do you know your brand essence? It should be 2 or 3 words only. Here’s an easy comparison of two distinct brand essences: Coca-Cola vs. Pepsi.

Coca-Cola’s brand essence is Happiness in a bottle. Enjoyment. A Sense of Wonder. Coca-Cola does a great job of making a human connection and remaining innovative while staying true to simple principles.

Pepsi, on the other hand, has a completely different essence. Pepsi stands for Youthfulness, Fun, and Being Social.

So while both brands are all about the positive feels, Coke shows it as personal happiness and wonderment, while Pepsi shows it as a fun party with friends.

Read below for three enlightening tips you can implement today for YOUR brand success.


Strategy: Your brand essence is the soul of your company and should be used as your north star in decision-making. It should go beyond what you do and how you do it. Consider what drives your business more than anything else. Your brand essence should be a maximum of three words, and in more straightforward brands, it might only be one word. To help in the process of defining your brand essence, ask yourself the following:

  • Does it capture your WHY?
  • Does it support your differentiation?
  • How would employees and clients describe it?
  • Is it meaningful?
  • Is it authentic?
  • Is it sustainable as you grow?

Visuals: There is no better way to show brand essence than through imagery. Does your brand use a consistent image style? Are you telling your story visually using images? If you aren’t sure, start by scrolling through your website, marketing collateral, or social media. Look at each image (without reading any words) and write down two or three emotions that come to mind when looking at each image. Group all the emotional words you wrote down together. Do you see common themes? Are the emotions you wrote down the emotions you hope to convey to clients and leads? Do you have too many different emotions happening? If you are looking at your website, remember that the emotions might change slightly from page to page, which is normal. You want to convey different emotions on the home page than on the “our story” page or your “services” page.

Website: My absolute favorite quick fix to improve the branding on your website is to take a quick look at your call-to-action buttons. If all of your buttons say, “Learn more” or “Book a Call,” you might have a problem. If your brand essence is CARE, why not use, “We’re here for you. Let’s talk.” If your brand essence is TRANSFORMATION you could use “I’m ready” or “Follow the Magic.”

“Learn the Secrets of Success”

“Start Dreaming Now”

“Charge Ahead!”

“Explore Options”

“Stay Up to Date on the Latest Trends”

“Join our Tribe”

Get creative! Have fun with them. Make sure they capture YOUR brand essence. A/B test them. Make sure they are motivating, informative, and concise.