What’s in a Brand Ethos? The Story of Making Mavens

Culture. Mission. Vision. Goals. Community.

We frequently talk about these key terms at HAVEN Creative. While we generally despise jargon (see ya, “marketing perspective!”), these are the foundational elements that drive your brand and story! They make up your brand ethos… or essence. However you think of it, this “secret sauce” drives your organization forward and is the link between engaged staff, happy customers, and a successful mission.

Brand ethos isn’t just a slogan painted on a wall or a static phrase… it’s the living, breathing, growing (okay, this is hyperbole) *heart* of your company. It is both reflective and forward-looking. Introspective and aspirational. The story of your brand ethos involves the values and culture and big, hairy, audacious goals you have for your organization. It may be fuzzy now, but let’s talk through our personal example. 

To me, Making Mavens means that you’re constantly sharing information and resources to partner, mentor, and teach others in our community. I believe sharing information is one of the most powerful ways to positively impact one another and build mavens around the globe.” ~Maven Jess

Making Mavens

At HAVEN, our brand ethos is to make mavens of our peers and partners. Making mavens isn’t a playful title- although we think it’s fun. It’s our commitment to sharing knowledge, tools and data our clients need to be successful. It’s about actively listening to our peers and partners’ needs and having radically candid conversations to overcome challenges as a team.

More than a culture of sharing knowledge, making mavens is also a culture of service. We believe we are better when we lift others up and build community. Whether it is a formal program, like HAVEN Heroes, or simply taking time out of a busy day to help someone in the community, service comes naturally when we live our brand ethos and focus on our mission.

“Taking a breather for the sake of helping someone is the most important thing to making a maven. At the end of the day, it comes down to serving and valuing others.” ~Maven Lilly

“To me, “Making Mavens” is more than just sharing knowledge, it’s our way of giving back. When we are “Making Mavens” we are giving back to our peers, our clients, to the communities we work with.” ~Maven Megan

This ethos also speaks to our goals: we want to make mavens of every client and partner and positively impact 1,000,000 lives in the communities in which we work. We’re dreamers but we’re also realists. We call this our big, hairy, audacious goal (or BHAG, if you’re into that sort of thing) because it’s big and sometimes scary…but we think we can do it if we continue to live our values. One million is only possible when our partners are experts, too. 

“To me, “making mavens” is about being empathetic to others’ needs. It’s about inspiring others, sharing knowledge and resources so we all succeed together.” ~Maven Jeni

Finding Your Company’s Brand Ethos

As you begin thinking about your own brand ethos, it is important to blend everything together to understand what makes your organization special. Keeping in mind the organizational culture, your values, the vision for the future, your goals and how your community interacts with the brand is crucial to figuring out your “secret sauce.”

“I believe that making mavens is about elevating those around us to build a better community. When our partners have the tools to be successful and be mavens in whatever they do, everyone is stronger.” ~Maven Ian

Here are three key questions about identifying brand ethos to consider:

  1. What values exemplify my brand and organization? If asked, what would my employees, customers, and partners say about our core values?
  2. What impact are we trying to make on the community? How does this impact align with our values?
  3. What behaviors or activities can you pursue to live those values and make that impact felt in your communities?

Figuring out brand ethos, understanding it, and sharing it with your key audience members is what we do best. If you’re interested in learning more about our branding and positioning services, ask to speak with a maven, today!

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