I had lunch with a friend this week who teaches at Drexel, and she told me that the one thing she absolutely wants her students to leave the course knowing is that “you must be interesting.”

So, then… branding.

Every company – and I mean every company – says it wants a “break-through brand.” But there’s a significant courage gap. C-levels say they want to be different, but then they get squeamish about potentially upsetting clients, and default to what’s safe. Committees drain all the life out of anything that might have a chance to create an emotional connection. The result is … boring. Even in drastic times.

Which brings us to Best Buy, and this brilliant commentary from David Brier at Fast Company. Best Buy is sinking fast (perhaps their new tagline should be “Look Out Below!”). The company is in big trouble. And yet, after months of work, they came up with a new tagline: Making Technology Work For You.

That’s just awful.

As Brier points out, they are guilty of creating a shitty brand.

Branding is not about your logo. It isn’t about your tagline.

It’s about What You Stand For. What you believe in. Where your organization is headed.

It is supposed to be the heart and soul of your business. If you just come up with a new tagline, or a new logo, but don’t pay attention to the important underlying theme, you have failed. You’re soulless.

You need to figure out why do you exist. That’s branding.