Corporate Eye

Branding and the Silo Effect

In marketing terminology, the silo effect occurs when a lack of communication or coordination of efforts between or within business units, departments, teams, etc. has a negative impact on overall performance in terms of meeting goals.  It’s important to be aware of the silo effect as it affects branding, because the negative affect to your brand could hurt your business and bottom-line in the long term.

Let me explain.  Business units or departments within a company often operate independently of each other.  As such, efforts are duplicated or counter-productive to the organization as a whole.  When it comes to branding, each silo haphazardly manipulates the brand (from incorrect logo usage to brand name errors, and more).  The end result – a poor overall brand experience is presented to consumers, which leads to inconsistency and brand confusion.

The silo effect is a perfect example of why it’s so important for organizations to have a brand champion and brand guardian such as a Chief Brand Officer who works to ensure the various silos operating within the company produce outputs that communicate a consistent brand message and promise.

Take a look at your organization.  Are teams operating in silos?  Is your brand suffering because of the silo effect?  If so, make the necessary changes to ensure your branding efforts remain a top priority for everyone.

Image: Flickr

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.

Dear Ms. Susan,
Why the name SILO, does it have any relevence.
Please clarify,

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