Crafting a successful brand strategy requires a few key elements that work together to ultimately enhance your brand’s messaging. Here are four things to consider when developing your brand strategy:
- A Brand Narrative
Before people care, they need to understand who you are and why you do what you do. This is most easily achieved through a strong brand story or narrative. While your brand story needs to showcase your brand’s personality and voice, there are a few things you’ll want to make sure you articulate:
- Your reason for being (this is your ‘why’)
- Where you’re from
- How to identify the brand (your package, your logo, your product)
- How people are supposed to use your products or services
- Why people should use your products or services
- What language to use to describe your brand and product (‘iced grande skinny decaf latte’)
- What you’re not (this is especially important if your brand is innovating products in a saturated market)
- Your brand’s leader
Once you’ve got these ideas down, you can weave them into a brand story.
- A Clear Message That Resonates With Your Audience
The brand message should inform the overall message you send to your target audience. It should focus on the values and attributes that matter most to that target audience. As you begin to define and refine your messaging, you should consider:
- Who is your target audience? (use personas)
- How do you want them to perceive you?
- What’s the best tone to use with your audience so that they perceive you that way?
- What is important to your audience?
It’s vital to craft your message around your target audience, rather than the unqualified opinions of yourself and those closest to you. Do some market research. Talk to your customers. Find out what they think, feel, and need.
- An Emotional Connection Based on Common Values
Your brand should connect with your target demographic through an emotional connection; this is often accomplished through shared values. You want potential consumers to see and learn about your brand and say to themselves, “that’s a company I want to do business with.”
- A Phenomenal Experience
It’s important to take the brand message, image, and story, and incorporate the same driving values/principles behind the brand into every single interaction a consumer has with your business. This means every interaction, every brand touch, every phone call, every visit, every email should be consistent. Too often, ‘brand strategy’ is left only in a PDF document or on corporate posters at the office. A true, strong brand strategy should be experienced by every individual that has any level of interaction with your brand.
Good branding is a powerful foundation. It’s vital for differentiating your business from your competitors and making your mark in the hearts and minds of consumers. Take the time to really evaluate your unique brand positioning and identity to make sure it resonates with your customers and their overall experience with your business.