Are you ready to unlock the secret behind building unwavering consumer loyalty? Imagine a world where your brand values and content seamlessly align, creating a powerful bond with your target audience. This discussion will explore how this synergy can become your greatest asset, propelling your brand to new heights. By understanding the transformative power of purpose-driven marketing, you’ll discover the key to capturing the hearts and minds of consumers in an increasingly competitive landscape. But that’s just the beginning – there’s so much more to uncover. Are you ready to embark on this journey with us and uncover the untapped potential that lies within?
Purpose-led brands are revolutionizing the market and forging stronger connections with consumers, employees, and society. These brands understand the importance of aligning their values with their consumers. Purpose-led brands can create deeper consumer engagement and loyalty by focusing on a brand purpose beyond profit.
Consumers today seek brands that align with their values, not just looking for products or services. They want to support companies that stand for something and positively impact the world. Purpose-led brands recognize this and have made it a priority to communicate their brand purpose authentically and consistently.
When a brand’s purpose aligns with the values of its target consumers, it creates a powerful connection. Consumers feel a sense of alignment and resonate with the brand on a deeper level. This connection goes beyond a transactional relationship and becomes a partnership based on shared values and beliefs.
Purpose-led brands also attract and retain employees passionate about the brand’s purpose. Employees want to work for companies that make a difference and positively impact society. Purpose-led brands provide a sense of meaning and fulfillment, which leads to higher employee satisfaction and productivity.
To gain a competitive edge in the market, brands must embrace purpose-driven marketing and align their values with those of their target consumers. Purpose-led brands have a higher chance of success and a stronger connection with consumers. By aligning their brand values with social causes, brands can differentiate themselves from competitors and create a lasting impact. Purpose-led brands attract and retain not only customers but also employees who are passionate about the brand’s mission. This can lead to a more engaged and dedicated workforce, further enhancing a brand’s competitiveness.
Furthermore, purpose-led brands have a positive impact on society and the environment. Consumers today are increasingly conscious of their purchases’ social and environmental impact. By aligning their values with causes that matter to their target consumers, brands can attract loyal customers who share their values and beliefs. This can lead to higher customer loyalty and advocacy, as customers feel a deeper connection with the brand and are likelier to recommend it to others.
As we shift our focus to ‘Generation P: Fidelity to Future Value,’ it becomes evident that aligning a brand’s purpose with its values is crucial for establishing a strong connection with consumers and driving long-term loyalty. This generation is highly conscious of social and environmental issues and expects brands to align with their values. Here’s why:
Differentiating your brand in a crowded market requires a clear and authentic purpose that resonates with consumers and sets you apart from competitors. One of the key factors in brand differentiation is aligning your brand values with a strong purpose. Purpose-driven brands like Tom, Lush, and Ben & Jerry’s have successfully differentiated themselves by integrating their purpose into their operations and messaging. By doing so, they have created a unique identity that attracts consumers who share their values.
Communicating your brand’s purpose effectively to consumers and stakeholders is another crucial factor in brand differentiation. By clearly articulating your purpose and showcasing how it guides your actions, you can build trust and loyalty among your target audience. Consistency in messaging and actions is essential to maintain this differentiation.
Measuring and tracking the impact of your purpose-led initiatives can also set your brand apart from others in the market. Demonstrating the positive outcomes and benefits of your purpose-driven approach can establish credibility and attract consumers who value your brand’s positive impact.
Lastly, it is important to continuously evolve and adapt your brand’s purpose to stay relevant and impactful. As consumer values and expectations change, your brand should be agile enough to reflect those changes and address emerging issues. By staying ahead of the curve, you can maintain your brand differentiation and continue to attract loyal customers.
Activate your brand purpose by integrating it into every aspect of your business operations and communicating it authentically to your audience. Aligning your brand values with your brand purpose is essential for driving consumer loyalty and creating a meaningful connection with your target market. Here are five steps to help you activate your brand purpose effectively:
To harness the immense potential of purpose-driven marketing, brands must align their values with social causes and authentically communicate their purpose to create a powerful connection with consumers. Brands with a strong sense of purpose and align their values with a purpose that aligns with social issues are more likely to resonate with socially conscious consumers who want to make a difference. Purpose-driven marketing goes beyond traditional advertising and focuses on positively impacting society and the environment.
By aligning brand values with social causes, brands can tap into the growing demand for socially responsible products and services. Consumers, particularly younger generations, are increasingly seeking out brands that share their values and actively contribute to social and environmental causes. Purpose-driven marketing allows brands to connect with these consumers more deeply, building trust, loyalty, and advocacy.
Moreover, purpose-driven brands have a higher chance of success in the market. By authentically communicating their purpose, brands can differentiate themselves from competitors and stand out in a crowded marketplace. Purpose-driven marketing not only attracts customers but also attracts and retains talented employees who are drawn to work for companies that have a meaningful mission.
Authenticity is the cornerstone of purpose-driven marketing, requiring brands to express their mission and values genuinely. In a world where consumers increasingly seek meaningful connections with brands, authenticity is vital in building trust and loyalty. When brands align their marketing efforts with authentic values, they attract like-minded consumers and foster long-term relationships that drive consumer loyalty. Here are five reasons why authenticity is crucial in purpose-driven marketing:
Leadership plays a crucial role in driving purpose within a brand, shaping its values, and guiding its actions toward societal and cultural issues. Marketing and executive leaders are responsible for creating and fulfilling a brand’s purpose, aligning it with its values, and ensuring it resonates with consumers. In fact, 95% of CMOs believe that companies should take the lead on societal and cultural issues, recognizing the impact that purpose-driven marketing can have on consumer loyalty.
Consumers today expect CEOs to speak out on important issues, with 86% of them holding this expectation. Therefore, it is imperative for leadership to not only define a brand’s purpose but also to communicate it authentically and consistently. This means examining company practices and making necessary organizational changes to align with the brand’s purpose rather than just paying lip service to a cause.
Overcoming the fear of missteps is essential for brands embracing purpose-driven marketing and building strong connections with consumers. While aligning brand values with social causes can drive consumer loyalty, it can also be daunting for brands to navigate this new terrain. However, with the right mindset and strategies, brands can overcome this fear and successfully align their values with their marketing efforts.
Here are five ways to overcome the fear of missteps and effectively align brand values with purpose-driven marketing:
Taking a bold stance for social change can propel purpose-led brands towards greater success, stronger consumer connections, and a positive impact on society and the environment. By aligning brand values with social causes and taking a stand on important issues, brands can differentiate themselves from their competitors and build a loyal customer base. Purpose-led brands that actively engage in social change attract like-minded consumers who share their values and inspire brand advocacy and loyalty.
Consumers today, especially younger generations, are increasingly drawn to brands committed to positively impacting the world. They want to support companies that align with their values and actively work towards creating a better society. When brands stand for social change, they show consumers they are more than profit-driven entities. They become catalysts for change, using their influence and resources to address social and environmental issues.
Taking a stand for social change also has a ripple effect beyond consumer loyalty. It can inspire other companies to follow suit and create a collective movement towards positive change. By leading the way, purpose-led brands can drive industry-wide transformation and encourage adopting socially responsible practices.
Now that you understand the power of purpose-driven marketing, it’s time to take action. Did you know that 73% of millennials are willing to pay extra for products and services from socially and environmentally responsible companies? You can tap into this value-based purchase intent by aligning your brand values and content and building a loyal customer base. So don’t wait any longer. Start integrating your purpose into all aspects of your brand and watch your business thrive in a crowded market.
Brand safety is not a new concept. Since the inception of newspapers and magazines, advertisers have recognized that advertising needs to be placed properly within the content. Layouts encompass more than just the visual appeal of how a page is organized. Ads, ideally, should be placed next to content that is complimentary. Ads that harshly contrast with the content they appear next to are seen as a less effective marketing strategy. An ad that is relevant to the content it sits next to makes for more effective marketing. However, placing the wrong ads next to the wrong content can have disastrous consequences.
Beyond effective marketing, poor ad placement can damage a brand’s reputation and standing in the eyes of investors and customers alike. No brand wants their brand associated with objectionable or offensive content, especially if that content doesn’t align with the values of the brand.
Brand safety is defined as the strategy of ensuring ads do not appear on, in, or next to content the brand does not approve of. The fear of customers associating a brand with abhorrent content because of ad placement is real, justified, and has been realized. That fear has led to brands making drastic changes and highly impactful judgment calls. One example of this fear making an impact is the 2017 YouTube “adpocoplypse”. Over 300 brands including Adidas, Amazon, and the CDC were alerted to their ads playing alongside white supremacy, Nazi, and other problematic content. In response, many brands paused their advertising buy on YouTube, and an investigation was launched.
Even though the channel the ad appeared on had no connection to an affected brand, YouTube pairing the two together created a big problem. Whether intend to or not, our brain records what we see and pairs things we see close together, so even though the ad never mentions the offending content, seeing that ad before the content pairs the two subconsciously.
YouTube, even before the 2017 disaster, has tools that help advertisers place their ads. Companies can target demographics and user behavior. Companies can even blacklist specific channels and use a filter to “exclude sensitive subjects”. However, many brands have said that despite tailoring their ad placement settings, their ads still appeared on questionable content. Take every step possible to ensure your ad does not end up next to content you disagree with to prevent negative association, but also accept that absolute control is not a reality.
After running an ad, you want to know how it did, and if you posted the ad online, then there are likely tools you can use to see exact metrics. Twitter and Instagram will show you the total number of impressions and interactions so you can see what ads are working and which ones are not. More popular and well-liked ads do more work for a brand than a lower performing ad. The best ads also bolster overall brand image, meaning an ad can sell more than a product to a customer, such as a brand, company, product, lifestyle, and more. Use this collected data to better inform future ads.
The Internet Advertising Bureau has created a list of what it considers inappropriate or illegal topics that marketers should avoid. The list nicknamed the “dirty dozen” includes drugs, crime, terrorism, as well as obscenity, military, and adults. “Fake news” is the 13th item on the list that was added in 2018. Running an ad in content related to any of the “dirty dozen” puts your brand safety at risk.
However, the “dirty dozen” is a vague list. Of course, it is safe to assume no brand wants to be associated with terrorism or crime, but other entries are largely subjective. What one person finds obscene might be perfectly fine to someone else.
There is also the reality that some brands are fine with some content topics that others are not. A car crash lawyer might be perfectly fine running ads next to a road accident story, but a baby car-seat maker might not want that association.
Interpreting the “dirty dozen” list is up to you and your brand. Use the list as a starting place to determine what your brand is ok with and what it is not.
Brand safety is an important factor when placing ads. You want to protect your brand without having your brand image ruined by something you don’t approve of. Before running ads on a platform, take the time to adjust any settings regarding ad placement. Be mindful of negative association created through ad placement. Determine what categories of content your brand is fine with and which ones cross the line. The “dirty dozen” list can help you figure out what to avoid in general before you nail down specific topics that you want nothing to do with.
A brand is a living entity- and it is enriched or undermined cumulatively over time, the product of a thousand small gestures.
You’ve heard the advice a thousand times.
And it’s true- there are countless brands in the world today! There are thousands of successful brands and hundreds of dominant brands, there are only a few known as iconic brands. What distinguishes these iconic brands from just ‘brands’, and what we can learn from them?
A powerful brand holds a strong brand identity that includes various components such as name, logo, tagline, graphics, color, shape, and typography, shape, sound, smell, etc. And the best thing about the icons is you know them when you see them. These brands transcend their product/service and become a part of the popular culture.
Iconic brands are instantly recognizable such as Nike, Coca-Cola, Google, Apple, FedEx. These brands put consistent effort in their product and service, the environment it appears in, and their tone of voice. Sometimes it becomes difficult for many businesses to deliver it all, consistently. The following branding tips will help you in creating a brand strategy for establishing a unique and iconic brand identity.
First, you need a unique and compelling name for your business or brand. It gives a recognition to your business as it appears on everything from your website and social media channels, to your products, merchandise, and marketing materials.
So, if you create a unique and memorable business name, it will be easier for people to develop a connection with your brand. It will help people easily recognize your brand.
Keep the brand name simple and easy for people to remember and recall.
A logo is the core of brand identity and therefore you need to create a unique yet memorable logo for your business. You can create a logo in a form of a graphic symbol, which is easy to remember and recall. However, sometimes it becomes difficult, time-consuming, and costly to create a symbolic logo. If you cannot design a memorable logo in traditional style (symbol graphic), then considering a wordmark or logotype is the best choice.
A well-crafted wordmark can be effective to represent your brand with a sense of professionalism. There are many brands with strong wordmark such as Coca-Cola, CNN, Mobil, and FedEx. Make sure your logo should always render consistently.
Your brand tagline says a lot about your business. You need to be clear and specific while creating a tagline or statement for your brand. Basically, it captures the essence of the value that a brand provides to its customers in just one or two concise sentences. You need to start with Unique Advantage Point (UAP) of your business to start when developing a perfect tagline.
Just think- how your business or product can make the life of your customers better? If your tagline can answer the question, it will connect people with your brand. Just focus on the message you want to pass on to the audience, if it gives a clear perspective and motivates them to try something extraordinary, then you really have a great tagline. The best example is Uber’s new mission statement. They changed the old statement “Make transportation as reliable as running water, everywhere, for everyone.” to the new statement “We ignite opportunity by setting the world in motion.” for a clear and better perspective.
You need to identify colors for your brand logo, usually, businesses choose one or two key colors for their logo. You can also create a corporate color palette by including other secondary colors.
Following are the meaningful and emotional essence of different colors:
Select the colors strategically as you want a fine balance between the values of the company and the effects you want on the people who interact with your brand.
You need to standardize the typography for your business. A brand’s typographic identity includes key text- brand name and punchline. You need to find and identify a font type for each of both. Also, you need to define a consistent way of writing headlines, which will give a distinct voice to your brand.
Make sure that the chosen fonts are easy to read and go well with all your printing material.
No matter what happens, you need to stay true to your brand story and brand values. That’s where iconic brands distinguish themselves. Iconic brands are always true to customers, and themselves. However, user-generated content is a great way to create a compelling story for your brand. That’s where people share their experiences and if you include it in your story, they will easily connect to it and engage themselves with your brand.
Finally, consistency in everything you do to promote and communicate about your brand holds the key to a successful iconic brand. However, building an iconic brand takes time. Consistency creates familiarity, which breeds trust and ultimately it leads to iconic brands.
Whether you are speaking with your customers, sending an email campaign, communicating on social media, hosting an event, and doing a press conference, you need to be consistent in everything and everywhere.
Make sure that your brand identities are consistent everywhere and everything you do to promote a business.
All the above tips will help you in creating a solid brand strategy and memorable brand identity for your business. However, you need to put consistent efforts over a period of time. Building an iconic brand takes time, patience, and careful crafting. That’s the way to create an iconic brand that people love and that’s how you will be able to measure the brand success.
Whether you’re a new start-up or an established business, brand awareness is always key. How can you make sales if people don’t know about you or the new things you’re doing? The Content Marketing Marketing Institution in fact found that 89 percent of B2B marketers labelled brand awareness and visibility as the most important goal, over sales and lead generation. But in this day and age, with so many communication platforms, advanced technologies and modern ways of thinking, what are the most effective methods of getting your brand out there? Let’s take a look at some of the main strategies that could be effective for your company.
It’s no secret that Social Media is a widely used tool that has a powerful effect on people’s opinions. No matter the platform of choice — Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube to name just a few — there is a potential to reach millions, even billions, of people around the world. Through a profile and regular activity that attracts your target market, a company not only has the ability to get their brand seen by the many people on Social Media, but you actually can communicate a strong and relatable brand personality. The great part about Social Media is that it is easily customizable. You can target audiences by age, gender, geographical location and even interests, to ensure that your brand is being seen by those most likely to identify with your values and require your services.
Another modern day technique for brand visibility is content marketing. With the onslaught of technology and the world wide web, audiences are faced with an overload of content, which is updated and shared every hour. People visit various websites, scroll through social feeds and Google search on a daily basis, so if your brand has content out there for them to stumble across, it’s all the more likely that audiences will become more aware. Try using bloggers and creating native articles to post on various publications that you know your target market are reading; or you could shoot interesting videos to upload and share on Social Media. You could even try writing an e-book on a topic of interest; just try and be creative and be proactive about spreading the content online.
Let’s not forget about those tried and tested traditional methods that have been working for marketers for a long time. Guerrilla marketing, for example, can be highly effective for companies trying to get their name out there. Uber, which is a billion dollar company has been known to take advantage of guerrilla tactics. You could also try getting a toll free number for your business because by adding a clear contact detail to the brand, you will be visible on 411 directories and online directories, which are seen by many people everyday. Plus, toll free numbers make it easier for customers to get in contact with you and therefore allows you to provide better customer service — an added bonus that can make a huge difference.
Increasing the visibility of your brand can be a process that is often time consuming and requires effort. Whether it’s using modern techniques or traditional approaches, marketers should be aware of effective strategies and be sure to make brand awareness a priority; if done properly, it can broaden your customer base, solidify your market position and increase returns.
Should your subsidiary businesses, products, and services carry the respective name of your mother brand, or live out their own lives in the global market in order to appeal to a certain range of demographics, otherwise unattainable with your primary brand personality? The answer will depend on your long-term goals and aspirations.
Brand architecture represents an invaluable piece in the puzzle of global market positioning and brand recognition, allowing you to develop new companies, products, and services and tailor them in terms of values, visual identity, personality, and voice in order to reach your audience. Rather than running the risk of inadequate and subpar customer feedback due to the overwhelming and familiar emotional response evoked by your mother brand, you can neatly organize your brand architecture to help clients, customers, and in-house teams better gauge and respond to your subsidiary brands.
In layman’s terms, brand architecture allows you to appeal to a wider audience by creating seemingly unrelated brands that are a part of a unified whole, or corporate brands that portray a unified story to larger demographic.
Given the aforementioned benefits, let us take a look at the crucial steps you should take to create your optimal brand architecture.
A brand, much like a growing person, starts off in a specific niche, and broadens its horizons to encompass numerous areas in life, taking interest, learning and mastering different traits. The place your brand starts in its genesis should not be the place it ends up, but rather it should pave the road to bigger and better things.
Thus, it becomes of essence to clearly define the new niches and future industries you wish to introduce your brand to, and create a demographic model that will yield the creation and fine-tuning of a new entity – your house of brands. Your house of brands is a group where every one of your new brands resides under the wings of your head corporation. In there lies the data, numerous marketing plans and strategies and dedicated teams that manage and grow your new businesses.
Brand architecture entails the use and optimization of three major architecture types, each with its own purpose and built in accordance with your aspirations.
The first type is corporate architecture. Corporate architecture entails the creation of unique companies, services or products that are supposed to live independently, yet are fully controlled and always come with a corporate identity prefix. This is a good solution for companies who want their new audiences to automatically associate their values with the corporate brand, avoiding the need for additional marketing efforts and complicated management delegation.
Secondly, there are sub-brands and endorsements. Succinctly, endorsed brands stand on their own in the local or global market, yet the corporate brand played a substantial, if not a key role, in their creation.
Endorsed brands can enjoy the benefits of the corporate brand’s support and protection, while being able to execute their own marketing strategies and create their brand in accordance with the corporate entity. This is an excellent solution for companies that want to create individual values, stories, messages, and visual identities for their new ventures.
Be wary though, endorsed brands need to deliver results in terms of brand recognition and value, and your corporate brand must actively participate in its establishment and ensure its strong footing before it can enjoy the fruits of its success.
Lastly, there is the option of creating individual product brands. This solution entails complete freedom of your individual brands, allowing them to live out their lives independently without any visible relationship with the corporate entity. This solution boasts numerous benefits but it can also present the corporate brand with hardship if not set up and managed properly. These unique brands need to be created with prudency and strategy, employing a strong marketing team for each, creating a professional management structure, developing a unique visual identity with graphic design and establishing an emotional relationship with the customers with a dedicate PR department.
Your brand architecture should be built gradually and it should be rationally positioned to evoke an emotional response. You need to utilize the customer’s inherent trait of emotionality to your advantage and build brands, products and services that will create a bond with your target audience. Remember, people consume content, buy products, and promote brands to their friends because they feel the brand to be an inseparable part of their reality, not necessarily because they need it.
Emotions trump functionality, and that is why your subsidiary brands need to be built on their strengths, advantages and benefits. Carefully start developing your new brands and list their functional traits from which you will derive their unique benefits that will spike an emotional reaction. These benefits need to be tailored perfectly to resonate with the specific target demographic and you will succeed in accomplishing this creative task by employing dedicated management teams to create and take the new brand out to sea.
Finally, hierarchy plays a pivotal role in the maintenance, productivity, and future success of your carefully built brand architecture. In a vast corporate conglomerate, it becomes staggeringly easy to lose a sense of direction and let your architecture fall to pieces under poor guidance and a lack of hierarchical communication and delegation.
For this reason, you must build and maintain a strong hierarchical foundation with clearly defined guidelines and regulations that will ensure productivity, financial prosperity, and long-term success with the best possible ROI.
The importance of establishing thriving brand architecture with careful planning and strategizing is unparalleled. Strong brand architecture will see your corporation to new heights, allowing your business to pursue new goals, create numerous revenue streams and effectively branch out into various global markets. Follow these crucial steps and you will easily pave the road to long-term success and prosperity!
Take a moment to consider what the most valuable asset to your business is. Is it your company’s physical location? Is it the products or services you offer? Obviously, those matter, but are they truly the most valuable things?
The answer, at least when its achieved, is a recognizable, loved and trusted brand. Yes, a brand.
Every business big or small must have a brand, and a name to go with it. It’s how customers differentiate you from the competition. It’s how they get to know you and what you have to offer. It’s everything your business has and does.
Sound a little far-fetched?
According to Nielson’s Global New Product Innovation Survey, it’s not a fantasy at all. In fact, 59% of consumers prefer to buy new products from brands they know or are familiar with. In other words, it’s trust and a history you really want to construct — this is the relationship you need with your customers.
Before that can happen, you need a brand, and customers need to know your brand. But what is a “brand” exactly and how do you show it off? How is your brand portrayed to customers and interested parties?
A brand is more than just a name — or a mission statement or even a goal. “Brand” is a term used to refer to the total perception of your business, as in what customers see or think when they consider your company.
It’s how you interact and communicate with your audience and customers. It’s your physical location, what it looks like, the state it’s in and how you conduct face-to-face business. It’s your print ads, signage, even retail packaging. It’s your website advertising and social engagement. It’s your content marketing and all the information you publish on your blog. It’s even the sales and customer service experience you offer, good or bad.
A “brand” is a consistent communication, engagement and experience across any and all platforms, applications and mediums. It is quite literally every single thing you do. That’s exactly why building a lovable and trustworthy brand is not an overnight thing. It takes a while, maybe even a long while. It requires substantial investments, patience and consistency.
Of course, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to speed up the process or fine tune what you’re trying to do.
Want to know how you can promote your brand online, whether through a website, forum or social network? Well, keep on reading. Here are the best ways to do it:
As they so often say, content is king. It’s also good for SEO, or search engine optimization, which is what helps drive traffic to your website. The more fresh and relevant content you have, the more chances you have of people finding your brand and site. Plus, relevant content is super shareable, so people are more inclined to engage and share with others via social media.
The best way to position yourself is as a thought leader. This is someone who has a lot of advice, tips or information to share with the community. For instance, a home improvement company could share DIY projects that are great to do at home. A restaurant could share DIY recipes that readers could try to make themselves, and so on and so forth.
The idea is to really position yourself as an influencer in your market so customers, as well as other professionals, come to you regularly.
Creating fresh content is a great way to entice new customers and potential readers, but that’s not where you want to start your building process. First, you’ll need to discover who you are, create content, products and services people desire, and then impact the world around you, hopefully for the better — hence the discover, create and inspire mantra.
Brands like Jose Cuervo, Disney, ABC, Bravo, Nickelodeon and many more leverage this strategy. It may seem like a bunch of hogwash on the surface, but the only way to truly build a strong brand is through a process such as this.
Discover who you are, what your brand is and how that reflects upon the world. Create something, anything, from commercial and consumer-based products to visual content and information. Finally, aim to inspire by kick-starting a story and experience that everyone can aspire to be. What has your brand accomplished? What makes you proud, and what experiences have you had that others can borrow from to improve their own lives or business?
There’s no avoiding it — you’re going to spread yourself thin across multiple platforms, apps and mediums. You’ll be focused on social media, your professional website, an e-commerce platform, advertising and marketing, and so much more.
Just make sure your efforts across the entire space are centralized and that they align. For example, don’t show everyone on your website that you’re a family-friendly brand or business, and then post mature, adult content on Instagram and Twitter. Keep the focus similar across all platforms, and that goes for your mission, content and strategies.
To build a brand, you need everything in sync, no matter how spread out you are.
This one is tough and won’t come easy, nor will it happen overnight. To make a name for your brand and stand out from the competition you absolutely have to be unique. You may have similar products or services, similar strategies and maybe even similar customers, but something makes you different. Hone in on whatever that is and use it to your advantage. Embrace the differences, not the similarities.
There’s a simple and single supporting point behind this idea. If you are no different than your competition, why would your customers choose you or your products? The answer is, they wouldn’t. They would most likely go with whatever brand or product they found first, which may not be yours.
Stand up. Shout from the heavens. Make your brand known, but more importantly make your brand shine out in an endless sea of sameness — yes, we used that word.
Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner
United Airlines recently made it to the news for all wrong reasons. It forcibly evicted an elderly passenger when one of its flights was overbooked. The video of the entire fiasco went viral, causing unrepairable damage to the brand’s reputation.
Pepsi had to pull out its Ad after it seemed to trivialize a serious issue and the whole thing created furor online.
These two separate incidences had two well-established brands in the core and people are going to remember them for a long time. Marketers and branding experts will continue to cite them when they talk about mistakes in branding.
But these were the case with known brands. What happens when there’s a brand in the making? What can kill the brand even before it has made a mark and how?
Here are some of the mistakes that ruin your brand building efforts even before it begins.
Always be passionate about your brand as half-hearted efforts never did a brand any good in the history of brand building.
Passion not only adds value to your brand, but also attracts consumer-attention. It lends a certain distinctness to your brand, which piques their interests.
Put 100% passion and focus in building the brand to see the results for yourself.
An exercise in passion is exemplified by Airbnb with its ‘Floating House’ campaign. Released as a competition in London, it brought 73,500 visitors to the Airbnb website and of them, 28,000 were first-time visitors. It resonated the motto of the brand “don’t just go there, live there” and that made a connect with the target user base. The passion caught on!
Building a brand from the ground up is a continuous process. It is a journey throughout which, the brand needs to be constantly nurtured as one wrong step, and your brand loses its credibility and years of efforts in one go.
Branding should be always on the top of your priority list and not an afterthought. Start on the right note by defining your brand on the basis of certain questions, which include but aren’t limited to the following:
These questions will help you carve a personality or character for your company, and therefore, define your brand.
Eyewear company Warby Parker works on ‘buy one give one’ business model. The unique business model clicks its target audience. They have a mission and their target audiences are the ones, who are inclined towards the mission. They know the brand’s value proposition and stand by it, earning the brand many loyal followers.
Every firm has its strengths and drawbacks. Lay the foundation of your brand by highlighting all its strengths and stick to it. Identify the USP of your brand and play it to your advantage.
UK-based innocent drinks is known for its smoothies, juices and veg pots. The popular brand sells over 2 million smoothies per week, but that’s not where its popularity ends! It is also known for its out-of-the-box, imaginative and playful social media presence. Just like their name, the content they post online is “innocent” and makes the crowd go all “aww”!
Don’t forget to add value to your brand.
It can be anything – reduced price, after-sales-services, in-store care, value for money, reward for loyalty, product enhancements, enhanced experience, using human element, so on and so forth. This will help you enhance the recall value of the brand.
Furniture giant IKEA’s interactive catalog is the best example of how brands can add value to their products and services. It used Augmented Reality to place furniture in homes and give customers assurance of buying the right furniture. Released before Thanksgiving Day, it gave users the incentive to try and buy its products.
Japanese retailer UNIQLO offered customers the first-ever neuroscience fashion campaign in Australia, where they matched the clothing selection based on their consumer’s moods. Using wearable technology UMood, they used brainwave reading to suggest clothing for the consumers. This unprecedented move set them apart from their customers and added value to their services.
Take the cue, focus on value-addition and there’ll be no looking back for your brand.
It’s a good practice to keep a tab on what your competitors are doing and how they are shaping their brand. But this doesn’t mean giving up originality.
In the early 80s, the Coca-Cola and Pepsi rivalry was in its peak. It seemed that Americans favored the sweeter flavor of Pepsi. In an attempt to be on up its rival, Coca-Cola decided to give its original formula a twist by launching ‘New Coke’ in April 1985. The new product didn’t go down well with the target audience, who demanded the original formula to be back. Coke lost the plot with this one and had to switch back to its original formula.
Lesson learnt – even if you track each and every move of your rivals, you need to embrace originality instead of imitating your competitors.
Your brand building efforts will go down the drain if you don’t give your customers enough reasons to trust the brand.
Make it easy for them to provide feedback, find ways to engage/interact with them, provide them support – before, during and after a purchase, accept your flaws and work on making the customer experience better.
After drawing flak for its exploding handsets, tech-giant Samsung came up with a brilliant marketing gimmick for its S8. The company geared up for the launch of the smartphone in UK by surveying the best views in Britain and placed a giant S8 frame on the locations. While the idea of the campaign is to showcase the handset’s specs such as “Infinity Display”, it also eggs customers to trust it again.
Brand building now involves the digital media, which has a fast-paced landscape. It goes without saying that you’ve to be on your toes and adapt to any change or twist to leverage your brand, especially on social media channels. This will require consistent efforts from you. In case your brand building tactics have a major setback, you should be ready to reinvent the brand.
World Wildlife Fund is an organization, which fights for causes with supreme marketing tactics. The brand uses social media channels to communicate its message in the most innovative ways. Their #EndangeredEmoji campaign was a viral hit that recorded 59,618 signups within the first couple of months. Over 1.6 Million people were encouraged to sign a petition to protect Virunga National Part and 560,000 #EndangeredEmoji and WWF mentions were seen at the campaign launch.
Another example is of Virgin Holidays, which used Live Videos to “Seize the Holiday” and demonstrated all the possibilities in the destinations serviced by the brand. With a major chunk of the population using Live Videos, it’s quite obvious that the brand is reinventing itself by using the latest technology.
These are some of the pitfalls you need to avoid as you set out to build your brand. Follow other brands’ success stories and learn lessons from their failures to create a memorable brand, the one which your target audience trusts and there’ll be no looking back! Have a brand story worth mentioning here? Do let us know in the comments!
Indrajeet is a content strategist who loves to write about digital marketing and how its various facets can be leveraged to drive business growth. He also provides strategic content support for B2B and B2C businesses to help them achieve their marketing goals. You can follow him on Twitter or connect on LinkedIn.
Whatever your product is, it is never a bad idea to attract more people. The problem is knowing how to attract more than one crowd. The first thing that you can do is try not to limit yourself to one market. These tips can also send you on your way to a more diverse audience.
You don’t have to change your product or all of the marketing to be effective. You just have to find out who to market it to that will help you spread the word. Some people are well connected and will get the word out to everyone, while other will help you make an impact because they are powerful. When you find the right people, have them work together on a project that will benefit you and them. If they promote your product while adding credits to their resume profile, their fans will learn about your events, or products and support the people. While you are planning the event, it might be good to brainstorm with the people to find out how their audience would benefit from it and their likes and dislikes.
You can include these things in the event and people will know that you can meet their needs. There are also many different resources out there you can use to get the word out about your business. You can use things such as Facebook, Twitter and even Vimeo to reach out to even more audiences. You can even look at different examples, such as those by ACN to get a good idea of how to use resources like this more effectively.
If there are target audiences that you would like to cater to, you can create a focus group to find the marketers. For example, if you want to target right winged conservatives, you could create a small focus group in a red state to ask them about their likes and dislikes in food, clothing and entertainment. When you get the information, you can target top people with a lot of influence in those markets to attract the target group. Setting up an interview with these top people to understand how you can benefit them and their audience is a way to win them over.
Learning which services will complement your business will help you in the long run. For example, if you are a wedding planner, partner with caterers, dress makers and cake makers to make your services most effective. Learn how to service them and help promote their businesses. You never know when you might need that special favor in the middle of a catastrophe.
If your company offers rewards, partnering with another company to transfer the rewards will make your customers feel appreciated. Chase and Southwest currently have a promotion that allows you to use your Chase points for the rapid rewards program to get discounts on flights. Promotions like this provide an incentive for customers to use your product. Another company is ebates. Ebates has partnered with many companies online and regular stores to offer benefits to clients that purchase products through their site. The customer will then gain a percentage back for every purchase and it can be given to them on a gift card.
In order to meet the needs of a greater audience, they have to find out about your product and why it would be beneficial to them. Choosing the right partnerships are the key to making this venture so successful. If you keep an open mind and learn to cater to everyone’s needs, the rewards could be an increase in marketing.
Brand building is a very complex process that has to be seamlessly planned and executed. One of the most important steps of this process is creating brand loyalty. Brands can exist only if they have an army of loyal customers to support them. In today’s competitive market, acquiring customers is tough, while keeping them is quite an achievement. Here are several strategies that will win loyalty to the brand and prevent your customers from defecting to the competition.
Defining and creating a brand narrative is an essential step in brand building and encouraging customer loyalty. You need to tell your customers a compelling story that they can relate to. It’s important to give a personal touch to your brand and show your customers how your products and services can help them solve a particular problem they have or improve the quality of their life. Your brand should reflect certain essential core values of your target audience, and storytelling is an excellent vehicle for developing a brand identity with which they’ll be able to establish a strong emotional bond.
Before the era of social media, one of the most important marketing forms was word of mouth. Nowadays, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram have taken their place. The results of a Nielsen survey show that 83% all over the world believe the recommendations they get from friends and family, and this fact best illustrates how immense the potential of social media as a WOMM tool is. It’s very important to communicate with your customers through various channels. That way you’ll get valuable insight into their needs and you’ll give them the opportunity to have their say and express their opinion about your products.
One of the main reasons why customers turn their backs on certain companies is bad customer support. White House Office of Consumer Affairs says that it is 6 or 7 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep a current one. If we bear in mind another stat according to which 59% of 25-34 year-olds share their poor customer experiences online, it’s clear that you need stellar customer support if you want to have loyal customers. Welcome your customers after the initial contact, thank them after their first purchase, or offer them any assistance they may need. Don’t underestimate the power of follow-up.
Lots of potential business opportunities are lost because of the lack of follow-up. Besides purely financial benefits, this strategy is also great for strengthening your bond with your customers. Another great method is letting your customers know when their warranty is about to expire, or when they’ll need a refill.
It’s always a nice touch to reward your customers with loyalty programs. Various methods can be used to show your customers that you’re thankful. For example, some companies use a simple point system which means that whenever they make a purchase, customers earn points which are later translated into some kind of reward. Another good example is giving loyal customers early access to a new product or a feature. In other words, make them feel special and appreciate their loyalty.
People love freebies. There are several good things about giving out free stuff to your customers. For one thing, it’s an excellent method of creating a buzz about your products or services, as well as promoting your brand. Have your brand’s logo printed on T-shirts, baseball caps, pens, or organizers. Just imagine the effects of creatively designed custom mugs if we have in mind the fact that people will be using them on a daily basis. This great marketing tool can be used in virtually any industry.
Trust goes both ways. If you want to build a relationship of trust and loyalty with your customers, you need to give them something that will make them feel valued and respected. Discounts and special offers are considered to be among the most valuable gestures that invoke customer loyalty. People tend to stick with brands that don’t shrink from generously reducing their prices. Provide your customers with added value by extending their warranty or offer them two-for-the-price-of-one deals and they’ll surely appreciate that. And don’t forget that people will spread the word online, and your efforts will be rewarded with spontaneous referrals.
If you want loyal customers you need to live up to their expectations as well as your promises. Consistency is your most powerful weapon for combating customer churn. If your customers are satisfied with your service and the quality of what you’re offering they won’t have a reason to look for something else. It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on your competition and be aware of what they’re offering in order to be able to be one step ahead.
Apply at least some of these strategies and win your customers’ loyalty.
Your brand strategy is the most important long-term aspect of business. If your aims are to make transactions and create an image of your business within the present marketplace, the branding strategies you’ll approach will decide whether you’ll celebrate long-term success.
Certain factors could influence the success of a brand strategy. From proper competitor analysis to setting up internal structures from the get-go, ensure you have procedures to ensure consistent customer service, adequate workflow, and so forth. In today’s article, we’ll examine nine strong factors that could bring your brand to the next level.
The branding strategy that you adopt is made up of more aspects:
It is the most challenging aspect of a newly launched business because it greatly impacts and influences your company’s performance in the long run.
There are though certain factors that could influence the success of a brand strategy. In this article, we’ll examine nine strong factors that could bring your brand to the next level.
It all starts with a simple idea. Then, it develops into a plan and quickly turns into a business. When you’re starting to work on your branding, the first thing you must do is to define your brand. The question is: “What does my business do, and what value does it give to the marketplace?”
After figuring out how your brand is useful, you can create a brand mission or purpose. Every professional brand has its own purpose, and it is usually leveraged through marketing campaigns.
For example, Nike’s mission is to bring innovation and inspiration to every athlete. Create a mission statement for your own brand and show it to the public.
Before you sell anything, you must do proper market research to determine what types of consumers belong to your target audience. A target audience is a group of individuals who might be interested in what you have to offer. Here’s a good exercise that’ll help you a lot:
Start to imagine your ideal customer. Think about:
When you get a clear picture of what your ideal customer looks like, you can start to validate your branding strategy ideas, taking him into consideration.
If you plan to take your brand to the next level, you’d better know what your competitors are doing. After all, you’re fighting over the same target audience, so there will always be a fight over customers. Start analyzing your competition and look for the following things.
These are enough to start. Take a look at your biggest five competitors’ websites and brands. With much patience, analyze their strategies and look for weak spots. When you discover a deficiency in your competition’s branding, you can leverage that.
Do something to fix their issue and let your potential customers notice the difference between you and them. One more thing – ensure you never copy-paste your competitor’s brand strategies, or else you’ll use McDonald’s as a copy-cat.
You realize that your brand’s logo must get stuck in your customers’ heads, right? It must be that good. First, a professional brand logo is distributed across all your promotion channels. Your Social Media channels’ profile pages, business cards, and almost every marketing material will also contain your logo.
I’d suggest investing in a professional graphic designer. The person overseeing your branding design must fully understand your company’s purpose.
Secondly, you must create an amazingly catchy tagline. Let’s use the Nike example again: “Just do it, McDonald’s. It’s just three words, but it’s an awesome message. Your brand’s tagline is essential to your success, as most people remember the taglines they liked.
If McDonald’s weren’t so tasty, their brand would suffer greatly because of their reputation. Everyone knows McDonald’s alters the ingredients to become addictive and extremely tasty. A few videos showed how unhealthy eating at McDonald’s is.
Your brand’s reputation is another differentiating factor between a mediocre and a successful brand. To maintain a healthy reputation, you must focus on your customers. You must immediately find solutions when you see negative reviews or customers who complain.
To stay on track, a consistent analysis of your performance is necessary. The best way to determine whether you’re on the right path is to seek feedback from your customers. You can do this in plenty of ways.
Michael Hardy, marketing specialist at Australian Writings, suggests that:
“You can take advantage your brand’s Social Media presence and get responses directly from your followers. In order to motivate your audience to help you with constructive feedback, offer them an incentive. It could be anything from a special report to a small free e-book.”
The feedback should never stop. It is the only way to find and fix your brand’s issues. In addition, your company’s reputation will improve due to all the positive adjustments being made.
Your employees are the only ones who will assist your activity, so you’d better choose them carefully. The recruitment process must be quite strict, and you should wait until you feel they’re good for the team.
The people you hire must understand your brand’s purpose and mission, and they should resonate with it. If they enjoy the cause and workplace conditions, they have no reason to perform poorly.
When you start your company, you are declaring your brand’s purpose. According to that purpose, your actions and strategies will be heavily influenced. Here’s something that could sabotage your brand’s success: the inability to stick to your brand’s purpose.
Many entrepreneurs do the big mistake of changing their plans along the way. This is wrong because you have already stated your mission. Therefore, changing your brand’s purpose will make you lose a lot of reputation and customers.
Do you actually want to become the best in your industry? Unless there’s a big monopoly in the industry (Coca-Cola, Google, Microsoft), no one says that your brand can’t become the best. If your niche market is smaller, there’s quite a big chance to overstep your competitors in time.
Set high standards and goals, and try to eliminate your limiting beliefs. You may think: “But I don’t have the necessary capital,” or “But X Competitor is always going to be the best in the field”. These are such damaging beliefs.
Everything starts with you – the owner of the business. If you limit yourself, your company will never become the biggest dog in your niche market. Creating and executing a well-thought-out plan means you take control, and your business can work around your lifestyle rather than the other way around.
If you want to have a strong brand, everything you do has to be qualitative. The employees, the marketing campaigns, the investments, and all the factors that come into play will have a huge impact on your branding performance.
If you care to invest time, focus, and money into these things, you’ll skyrocket your chances to become a big name within your industry.