Strike Gold with Your Brand Strategy
You’re headed down the highway out of town on a road trip. You’re making good time, but the snacks ran out fifty miles ago. The kids are restless, hungry and starting to squabble.
From a mile away they spot the “Golden Arches.”
In unison, “McDonald’s!!”
Children as young as preschoolers recognize the McDonald’s brand; all by design as the fast food burger company understands their customers and how to appeal to them.
When it comes to building a strong brand, McDonald’s set the gold standard. They have been able to successfully build a global brand that is instantly recognizable. A big part of that success comes from their focus on consistency. Their logo, their slogan, their packaging, and their messaging are all consistent no matter where in the world you see them. This helps create a strong association in people’s minds between McDonald’s and the things they value – convenience, affordability, and predictability.
But how did the hamburger fast food chain’s branding efforts become so successful? It all starts with understanding who their customers are and what they want. McDonald’s knows that their customers are mostly people on the go who are looking for a quick and easy meal.
Get Started on Building a Solid Brand Strategy
Now, think about your business.
How much time have you invested in developing and promoting your brand? What does your company’s brand say about your business? Are you reaching your intended customers?
A business brand is much more than just a logo or a name though. It includes the perception people have of your business, based on their interactions with you. It’s also the promise you make to your customers about what they can expect from your products or services.
A well-defined and executed brand strategy creates an emotional connection between consumers and your products or services. With a well-designed brand strategy, you can control the direction of your brand and reach more clients or customers.
In this blog, we’ll break down how to build a successful brand and take you through the steps to do so.
What is Branding?
Branding is all about creating a unique identity for your business. One that sets you apart from the competition and tells your customers what they can expect from doing business with you.
Elements of branding include:
- Your name
- Your logo
- Your tagline
- Your colors
- Your fonts
- Your imagery and design
- Your voice, style and personality of your company
All of these branding elements work together to create a visual representation of your brand that people will remember. Your brand should be consistent across all of your marketing materials, from your website to your business cards to your social media profiles. This consistency will help people recognize and remember your brand wherever they see it.
Why is Branding Important to the Success of Your Small Business?
Branding gets you noticed
A strong brand makes it easier for your business to stand out from your competition and get noticed in a crowded market.
It can also help customers quickly understand what your business does, as well as how you are different from others that offer similar products or services.
Branding creates a sense of trust that builds long-term customer loyalty
Customers are much more likely to do business with brands they trust. Branding helps to build this trust by creating an emotional connection between customers and the company.
When customers have a positive experience with your brand, they are much more likely to become loyal customers over the long term. They’re also more likely to promote your business to their friends, family and colleagues – something that can drive even more growth in today’s world of digital marketing.
Branding increases the value of your business
It’s important to create competitive advantages in business wherever possible in order to keep up with your rivals. Studies report companies with consistent branding may experience a 33% increase in revenue.
Now that you know exactly what branding is and why it’s important, let’s discuss how to bring it all together.
What is Brand Strategy?
Brand strategy is the process of planning and executing a set of decisions that will create and maintain a unique position for your business’s products or services. It involves setting goals, developing tactics, and ensuring that all marketing communications work together. Your branding strategy will be different from that of other businesses, even if you offer similar products or services.
Six Steps To A Successful Brand Strategy
Here are the six steps necessary to help you get your brand on track.
Define your brand. You need to know exactly what it is you’re trying to accomplish. What your business stands for and why it exists.
Questions to answer:
- What are your goals for your brand?
- What is your mission?
- What are your core values?
- Your company culture?
- How will people benefit from it?
- What is it that you want your brand to do for your company?
- What do you want others to know and say about your products or services?
Define your target audience. These are the people you want to reach with your branding. Identifying your target audience allows you to build effective marketing strategies that target their specific needs.
Questions to ask:
- How old is your target audience?
- What is their income range?
- What are their occupations?
- What other interests do they have?
- How do they behave online?
- What are their habits?
Determine what makes your brand unique. How? Understand your competition. Research their brand strategy. How are they positioning themselves in the market?
What to look for in your competitors:
- What are their core values? How are they marketing to their target audience? What can you learn from them?
- What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats when stacked up against your competition?
- How do you solve your target audience’s problem in a unique way compared to your competitors?
Tell your brand story. Give your business a personality and a voice. This is how you communicate with your target audience and where you develop your key messaging.
- Your messaging should also include the development of your business brand promise in one or two sentences, which internally communicates what the customer expects from all products and services.
Create a visual identity for your brand.
- Your logo, color scheme, typography, photography, and other design elements should be consistent with your brand messaging and reflect your brand’s personality.
Determine how your brand will appear everywhere. The final step is to determine how all of the above elements will appear everywhere your brand appears online and on printed marketing materials, signage, business cards, and product packaging.
- Your visual identity should be consistent across all touchpoints. Consistency builds trust with your target audience and reinforces your brand message.
Now that you’ve got the critical elements to building a successful brand, you’ll want to monitor and adjust your strategy over time. If you’re overwhelmed by the process, you can always hire a professional marketing agency to help you save time and money while strengthening your efforts.
How a Professional Marketing Agency Can Help Build Your Brand & Strategy
A marketing agency will start the development of building your brand and strategy with a professional audit. Essentially, a brand audit is an in-depth analysis that shows where your company stands within the market.
The process assesses how well your business brand meets the expectations of the public, portrays the company culture, and delivers on the brand promise. Part of this includes a visual assessment of your colors, and textures, and the use of visual imagery including spacing, fonts, and more across your marketing materials.
A professional marketing agency will also have a team of experienced designers who can help to create a new logo or update your current one. They will also be able to design any other branded materials you may need, such as business cards, letterheads, or even a new website.
Brand Style Guide
An agency will also help you with building a professional brand style guide: an instruction manual or digital rulebook with guidelines on how a brand should be communicated. It lays out specific rules and standards for the ‘look and feel’ of your brand wherever it may appear.
The style guide will line out specific rules for the brand to be shared with your team, media and advertising agencies in order to follow the guidelines to communicate your brand consistently.
A digital advertising agency will also be experienced in managing and executing campaigns across various channels. This could include everything from running social media ads to organizing a print or outdoor campaign. And, most importantly, a marketing agency will have experienced staff who are experts in measurement and evaluation. This means they can track the performance of your campaigns and report back to you with actionable insights to help improve future campaigns.
At Precision Marketing Partners we do it all for you. Save time, money and stress by entrusting your brand to our team of experts – you can focus on running your business while we promote it.
Schedule a free consultation to discuss your needs.
We are a friendly and affordable turn-key marketing agency with lots of experience managing clients’ social media platforms. From website design and boosting your Google rankings to creating your print collateral and writing blogs: we do all things marketing. We specialize in helping small businesses play big.