Coming up with a good brand strategy can sometimes feel impossible for small business owners. If you’ve never done it before, how will you know if you’re on the right path? In this piece, we will look at the framework of the ultimate brand strategy. If you follow the guidelines set out for you, then your business will be on the right path, and you will soon see your brand grow.
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Don’t Stray Off Track
A problem many businesses have is they’re inconsistent with their branding efforts. They’ll do things that don’t really relate to their business and have no purpose at all. There’s no point doing something if it doesn’t aid your brand and help it in some way or another. You must remain on track and keep doing things that align with your company image and promote your brand the right way.
A good example of a brand straying off track will revolve around their social media output. Social media content plays such a huge role in defining and reinforcing your brand. There are countless companies that might post content that doesn’t really fit their brand image, they just do it because the content is popular on social media. For example, let’s say a specific event is happening and there are lots of memes floating around social media and getting high engagements. If your company is branded as very modern and fun, with a history of posting funny memes to build your brand, then posting a new meme will make sense. It reinforces your image and serves a positive purpose. On the flip side, if you’ve never posted a meme before and your business isn’t built around being funny, then it won’t help you in any way. It will confuse consumers, as they’ll have though your business was branded in one way, and now you’re throwing a huge curveball.
Before you post any content or create any adverts, ensure they align with your brand image. If they don’t, you’ll create consumer confusion and end up with a brand that’s hard for anyone to identify with. So, take extra care and ensure you never stray off track.
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Make Sure Your Employees Are Involved
The key to a great brand strategy is to ensure your employees are involved as much as they possibly can be. Why? Because with their help you can grow your brand and make your strategy more effective than ever before. They have to represent your brand and understand how they should communicate with your customers and other consumers.
As an example, let’s say you’ve worked hard to build a very professional and serious brand. In which case, you’d want your social media team to respond professionally to any interactions with consumers, to help build keep up with your brand image. Likewise, imagine you’ve built a brand that’s meant to be fun and very laid back. Now, if a customer called your service line or walked into your office/store, they’d expect to be met with relaxed and friendly staff. So, if your employees are all moody and uptight, then it doesn’t represent your specific brand image. Teach your staff the importance of following brand values and ensure they know what your brand is about. This is something you should think about when hiring people, make sure they know the image your company is creating, and that they’re on board with it.
You can also use your staff as a way to promote your brand. If you give them branded clothing or uniforms, then they’ll wear it to and from work. As such, other people will see them in your branded gear, and your brand will grow. You can also create branded products like these Dynamic Gift USBs and give them to your employees. Now, say they’re in a coffee shop doing some work on a laptop, they’ll have your branded USB sticking out of their computer. Again, it helps to broadcast your brand and increase brand recognition. Don’t underestimate the power of your employees!
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Find a Way to Connect with Your Customers
A key part of a great brand strategy if figuring out how to connect with your customers on a deeper level. The best brands in the business will really connect with their target customer base, and it makes them feel more connected to the brand. Forging a deep emotional connection can help influence a consumer’s choice when looking for different products/services on the market. It makes them feel like they should choose you because there’s a connection there.
Ultimately, you have to make your customers feel like they belong. Make them feel like your business is just like them, and all the other customers are similar to them too. What this does is create a community around your brand. It also helps you build a loyal customer base! One idea that’s very popular is to create forums for your business. Give your customers a place to get together and chat about your products or whatever else they want. This helps them connect with you and each other.
This is arguably the hardest step in the branding process, but also one of the most effective. If you get your customers relating to you on an emotional level, then they’ll be in your back pocket for life. You’ll be their ‘go to’ brand if they ever need to buy a product/service that you offer. This is why it’s so important you have a clearly defined target market before you begin your brand strategy. You must define who your business is aimed at, or you’ll never be able to connect with them emotionally.
Branding is a huge part of every company’s marketing strategy. You must create a brand that people can relate to, and then focus on moving this brand forward and growing it. The key things to think about are consistency, employee involvement, and connecting with your customers. If you consider all of the information in this guide, then your brand strategy will be moving in the right direction.