Brand Equity

What it means

Brand equity is the power or value of your brand. You create it by building recognition and familiarity, which leads to positive perception. It is built over time and encompasses every touchpoint with the museum (e.g., what’s on your front door, welcoming and branding statement on the website, and how you interact with partners/sponsors).

How it’s used

All strategic decisions have an impact on brand equity so it should always be a consideration. It’s everyone’s responsibility because even small decisions affect organizational brand perception and thus, accumulated equity. The brand is not static; brand equity is affected by both intentional and unintentional decisions made by everyone involved with the museum.

How does a particular decision (e.g., exhibition selection, social post, or interaction with a visitor) advance or diminish our reputation?

Why it matters

Brand equity translates into people’s willingness to spend time or money in support of your museum. A well-known and trusted brand contributes to the cultural organization’s ability to advance its mission as well as its societal and revenue-based goals. Brand equity allows a museum to have greater influence and impact in building relationships with and for the communities it serves.


Brand equity can be lost from an ill-advised rebrand. The urge to change things is sometimes driven by boredom. Here is a cautionary tale on brand fatigue and some valid reasons to go ahead if it is indeed time: Why Rebrand.

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