Your brand is integral to the growth and sustainability of your business. It defines what the business stands for in two very distinctive ways:
– Creatively – through logos, colour palettes and fonts, website design, social media (use of videos and images) and marketing taglines
– What you deliver – messaging and ethos, standards and principles of people/employees and customer relations.
What is branding?
The creative elements of a business deal with emotions, while what you deliver day-to-day are also central to your brand, so a good brand strategy is finding a balance between these two elements so that:
– Your brand represents your business fairly and responsibly
– Your brand enables the business to grow and develop
– Your brand gives your product or service the best chance of fulfilling your customers’ needs.
Choosing the right brand strategy will allow you to do all these things, as long as you first establish some key elements within your business, such as:
– What is your customer base?
– What is your personality?
– What do you want to say?
– How do you want to say it?
All these elements are wrapped up in your branding and what it represents, so it is critical that branding is carefully designed and implemented and that it is effective in demonstrating what your business is about.
Why is branding important?
Getting branding right will enable you to connect with your customers, to align yourself with your customers, to understand their needs and to react to changes in the market, your target demographic or in your competitors. This could be your customer base changing or the industry changing, but either way you need to be close to it and to understand it. Your brand also allows you to stand out from the crowd and be different, which is essential in offering something your competitors can’t and gaining some stature in the marketplace.
In this sense, it is important that your branding – in terms of creative elements and messaging elements – captures hearts and minds by understanding the audience and subliminally telling them what they want and need. This is the essence of a strong brand, because it becomes a personal connection between the product and the audience which transcends the product itself, and which can only be maintained if you change the brand as your audience or the market changes also.
How do I know if I have the right brand strategy?
Your brand is an ever-changing thing, so it is important that you:
– Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of the brand
– Change and freshen up the brand accordingly
– Expand the brand to give your business room to grow
This can take many years and may require significant investment, but it is essential to any successful business. However, while the brand is always changing and has to evolve to match your business, it has to be consistent across all platforms in order to give it authenticity, credibility and a chance of being recognised. Only this way can it always reflect what you stand for.
So, the key to having the right brand strategy is understanding where you want your business to go and having a brand which always reflects that, but also incorporating a tangible measure so you can see how the brand is performing. This could be sales figures, market percentage compared to competitors, website hits, social media followers, video likes or feedback from customer research or interaction. It is important that this measure means something and is something you can react to.
Understanding the importance of brand strategy
Ultimately, brand strategy is about marrying together your reputation and your perception. So this is how you perform and how you are visualised. The perfect scenario is to form and develop a brand where reputation and perception come automatically, and the brand is doing the work for you. But it is essential that you are able to monitor and measure this, because change and avoiding standing still is the best way for your brand to stand out from the competition, and for your brand strategy to be successful.
If your business needs help and guidance on branding and brand strategy then contact Rebus today and our design experts can look at your brand and evaluate how it can best work for you.