Brand Compliance: What It Is & Why It Is Important
Branding represents who you are as a company, your philosophy and values, and the story you want to tell your audience. Consistency is, however, crucial to the success of your branding efforts. According to a study from Salesforce, 75% of consumers expect brands to offer a consistent experience across multiple platforms. Another study from Canto also showed that consistent branding increases total revenue by 33%.
To ensure consistency, your company must invest in brand compliance measures. Brand compliance ensures that your company stays in control of your identity and image, regardless of how many partners and channels are introduced into the mix. Without an effective brand compliance strategy, you’re failing to take advantage of the opportunity to build brand recognition, trust, and authority.
What Is Brand Compliance?
‘Brand compliance’ refers to a marketing initiative that aims to ensure that all branding elements align with the company’s quality standards, visual identity, and values. Staying true to your branding allows you to protect your interests, ensure the loyalty of your customers, and prevent errors and misuse that can adversely impact your company.
There are different ways to ensure consistent messaging. For instance, you can establish a dedicated brand compliance department or you can use software that allows all the relevant teams to store, access, and manage on-brand digital assets in one central location.
The goal of brand compliance is to ensure that every step your company takes—even the seemingly trivial ones—adds value to its brand. Here are some of the other goals of brand compliance:
Ensure that the brand looks and feels consistent in both traditional and digital communications.
Execute brand content with the correct imagery, logo, colors, and fonts.
Maintain a distinct personality by using the same voice and tone for all platforms.
Structure marketing campaigns and company projects so that elements stay on brand.
Why Is Brand Compliance Important?
Essentially, a company’s branding is its unique identity. It’s what makes you stand out from your competitors and encapsulates your company’s values, voice, and personality. Brand compliance helps you protect this identity for your employees and your customers.
Here are the other benefits of developing a compelling brand compliance strategy:
Build Brand Recognition: Brand compliance makes it easier to build brand recognition. Existing and potential customers will be able to recognize your company—no matter which platform they may be on—if you’re consistent with your messaging. When a consumer is familiar with your products and services, they’re more likely to make a purchase.
Prevent Reputational Damage: Off-brand content can harm your reputation. Even tiny irregularities in branding can significantly dilute its integrity. When your branding is inconsistent and sloppy, you give potential customers the impression that your products and services are just as haphazardly made. Brand compliance demonstrates your company’s reliability and internal due diligence.
Ensure Better Positioning: Branding enables you to take a specific position and convey this to your audience. Brand compliance helps you reinforce how you place your company in the market and against your competitors in your customers’ minds.
Prevent Marketing Chaos: Off-brand content is less effective in capturing your audience’s attention and building long-term relationships with your customers. Brand compliance ensures that your marketing campaigns all hit the right message for your target audience. More importantly, brand compliance improves the productivity of your marketing team since campaigns will be based on already established brand concepts.
Prevent Misuse And Misinformation: Misuse of your branding can adversely impact its reliability and your company’s public image. By strictly insisting on consistent branding, you can prevent other entities from engaging in false claims or advertising. You also reduce the chances of costly lawsuits due to rogue messaging.
Increase Sales: A report from Canto showed that 75% of consumers want brands to provide the same values no matter what channel they’re on. If the marketing team is creating and releasing campaigns with differing tones, something will feel off. Effective brand compliance ensures that these campaigns are consistent throughout, leading to a better bottom line.
Build Institutional Know-How: Brand compliance makes it easier for you to ensure that branding guidelines are effectively transmitted across current and future employees, partners, freelances, and agencies that’ll help you create content and other digital assets for your company.
How Do You Enforce Brand Compliance?
Having a written set of guidelines is a good start. However, you shouldn’t stop there. Brand compliance isn’t a one-time activity—you’ll need to work on maintaining your brand integrity continuously. Here are some tips to help you out:
Use Software: As previously mentioned, digital asset management (DAM) software can help streamline your brand compliance efforts. DAM software can help you achieve both consistent branding and marketing operations efficiency. It can reduce the turnaround time for marketing initiatives and facilitate collaboration and communication between your team members.
Establish An Audit System: Regularly assess marketing materials and company communications once they’re created and distributed. Occasionally, there may be missteps in branding, so it’s good to have a system to evaluate upcoming projects, content, products, and services for consistency.
Involve Your Team: Get your employees involved with your brand compliance efforts. International business leader Doug Conant once said that ‘you must first win in the workplace if you want to win in the marketplace.’ Make sure that everyone is on board. Provide brand training and testing to help your team understand how advantageous the outcomes will be to everyone involved.
Monitor Results Of Your Efforts: Brand compliance doesn’t stop with implementing the strategies and measures you’ve come up with. Regular monitoring is necessary to ensure that everyone’s on board and that the results are meeting your expectations. Monitoring also helps you determine whether there are areas you can improve, adjust, or completely overhaul.
Brand compliance is challenging, but it’s attainable. It requires careful planning, a well-organized team, and an intuitive software to tie everything together. To ensure consistent branding across the board, design and implement formal guidelines that your team can use. They should have the right resources and tools to ramp up your brand compliance efforts.
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