Every brand needs a dream team. That team consists not only of people who help create, communicate, manage, direct and protect the brand, but also of words, symbols and slogans that serve as brand messengers. The chosen brand messengers require a human brand team to shepherd the brand from conception to consumer.

Here, we’ll take a look at these brand tribe members, who vary based on the size of the organization. However, since the advent of social media, even smaller brands are experiencing the need for conscious collaborators to co-create various aspects of the brand across the burgeoning array of platforms.

Who are the collaborators for brand development, marketing, communications, and protection? First, there is the graphic and creative design team, charged with the visual communication of the brand. The overall brand manager oversees the tangible and intangible aspects of the brand. In the case of products, the tangibles are the products themselves, packaging, price, etc. For service brands, the tangibles center on the creation of customer experience, including the retail environment, interface with salespeople and overall satisfaction.

The intangibles for all brands consist of the emotional connections made as a result of experience, identity, communication and people. Intangibles are managed via the manipulation of identity, communication and people skills.

What about a brand marketing manager responsible for developing and executing marketing programs that increase brand identity and brand awareness of a company or product? Then, the digital marketing director has become an important position in many companies, and he or she is often charged with overall branding, brand awareness, brand messaging and managing adherence to global brand guidelines in the online marketplace. The digital marketing director can also manage teams dealing with program and product launches, metrics and online reporting, e-mail, and online marketing programs, to name but a few possibilities. The social media director executes brand strategy across various platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, which play an important role in customer interaction, feedback and communications in today’s marketplace.

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What happens when an affiliate is typosquatting or suddenly buying Google Adwords using the brand’s name? Enter brand counsel. If you are planning for success, you’ll need this team member. The need for expert counsel comes with the territory. In today’s world, marketing teams must work in close communication with brand counsel. Global brands such as XEROX exemplify companies that have embraced this rapidly changing landscape. During my recent interview with Margaret Walker, the Global V-P of Intellectual Property at XEROX, for the forthcoming book Brandaide, Margaret shared with me the importance of communication across disciplines. Imagine brand managers in 140 countries worldwide, each dealing with local domains, languages and marketing campaigns, team members who are also responsible for maintaining and protecting brand integrity. Great brand marketing strategies should be cleared with brand counsel in advance, lest disappointments and misunderstandings arise when counsel has to say, “No, that can’t be done.”

Brand counsel works to train and educate other team members, such as brand managers and digital marketing managers, on brand selection and usage. Counsel also works with team members to help position, strategize and protect new brand initiatives. This type of communication is vital, especially for brand owners with a rapidly expanding customer base, a strong Internet presence or international aspirations. Equally important is the ability to access expertise on a moment’s notice when one needs to deal with issues such as domain hijacking, website infringements, counterfeit goods and a plethora of other dilemmas that emerge quickly, often without warning.

Have you ever considered how the value of a brand is measured, and why? When a business is sold, up to 60% of the value of the purchase price is often for the brand! That figure got my attention, and helped me recognize and appreciate the importance of building the value other team members have worked hard to create. Valuation experts in Intellectual Property are often the goal tenders of brand equity and brand value. When a company is sold, the brand valuation expert is vital. Then, there are brands which may have failed, but are sold and relaunched. Sharper Image is one that comes to mind.

No matter the size of your brand, understanding the roles various individuals contribute to the overall value of a company’s brand(s) is vital in today’s world. Next we’ll look at the messengers of brand values, those team members known as trademark and brand drivers.

Photo credit: Ingrid Truemper