With your Brand’s history complete for the brand book, it’s time to start distilling the keywords for your brand. If you haven’t done this exercise yet, a Word Cloud is an excellent way to tease them out.
Identify Keywords for the Brand Book
Copy the text you wrote for the brand book on the history of your brand and head on over to wordle.net/create. Paste the text of the history into the “Paste in a bunch of text” field and hit “Go.” What you’ll get is a word cloud that looks something like this:
Right away we can see a couple of important things about the history we created in the brand book. First (and appropriately) we used the words “Rubber” and “Duckie” the most. That’s good, that means we were talking about our brand. If, for some reason, your word cloud doesn’t show the name of your brand in the largest font size, it’s you should consider making some edits to the history so that your brand name is the most commonly used word or words in your brand book history.
Next, you’ll notice that other words from the history start to jump out at you. In this case, “charities,” “rubber,” “fame,” “song,” “win,” and “race.” Some of those are good descriptors for our brand position – some are not. “Fame,” for instance, would not be a good keyword for the Rubber Duckie brand–although it is famous, it’s not what we want people to think of when they hear “Rubber Duckie.” To get rid of it is easy, in Wordle, right click on the word “Fame” and then click, “Remove Fame.” Continue this process until you are happy with the words that remain as descriptive keywords for your brand. What you will be left with is something that looks like this:
This Word Cloud is a good representation of the brand based upon the history we’ve written. But it may not tell us the whole story. All brands evolve over time, and it’s important to make sure that our keywords for our brand book reflect where we have been and where we want our brand to go in the future. There are probably a number of documents that have been written about your brand position. Take a few of them and repeat the above steps to see what word clouds emerge.
For the Rubber Duckie Brand, we have Ernie’s Song, first broadcast in 1970 and written by Jeff Moss to measure our success with. When we take the lyrics to the song and put them into the Wordle create page, then tidy up a bit, we get a word cloud that looks like this:
Clearly, this is a very different looking word cloud than the one above derived from the history we wrote. The differences are important to note, the first is a bit more of a “zoomed out” view of the brand, while the second is a very good description of the experience of playing with a Rubber Duckie. Which is right for our brand book? Both and neither. This is where you have to put on your strategic marketing hat.
Using several word clouds, make a list of the 10 most descriptive keywords for your brand position. These should embody your brand attributes, brand values, and brand aspirations. Try to order the words from most important to least important. For the Rubber Duckie brand book, I think we end up with a list that looks like this:
Word clouds display both the relative importance of the keywords and do so in a visually interesting manner. This makes it an ideal way to include your Brand’s keywords in your final Brand Book.
To create our final Word Cloud for the brand book, take your keywords list back to Wordle and open a create window. Paste your list into the create window. To give the word cloud some dimension, add your brand name 6 or 7 times to the text. Then copy the first 5 (or so) items from you list and paste them in twice more. So you end up with a create box that has the following words in it:
imagination friend joy clean charity children dream chubby bathtime squeeze Rubber Duckie Rubber Duckie Rubber Duckie Rubber Duckie Rubber Duckie Rubber Duckie imagination friend joy clean charity imagination friend joy clean charity
Then hit the “Go” button and adjust the fonts, layout, and colors until you are happy with the way your Word Cloud is displayed for your brand book. Once you’re happy, print your screen to a PDF (if you have the capability) or press the “PrtSc” button on your keyboard to copy your screen. Then paste the screenshot into a picture editing program and crop the image down to be just the word cloud. Of course, if you have a good image editing program you can also build your own Word Cloud, using the one you created on Wordle as inspiration. What you will end up with is a word cloud that displays the most important keywords for your Brand’s position in the Brand Book.