Before developing marketing campaigns or investing in branding initiatives, it is important to have a brand alignment from the inside out. Internally, you must know the purpose that is at the core of your brand. You must understand what makes your business unique. From the outside, it is important to develop a concise message and branding strategy that clearly communicates the solution that you want to offer customers.
Thankfully, there are many resources that can help businesses develop a strategy that works for them. In this article, we will share a comprehensive guide to develop a strategy that actually delivers results.
Step 1: Understand Your Brand
Before you begin working on your brand strategy, it is important to understand the purpose of your company and what your mission statement communicates. Understanding your core values will help you stay true to your goals while making sure that you are meeting the needs of your audience. Understanding your unique selling propositions will help you grow and expand by leaning into the differentiators that set you apart from the competition.
At the core, a brand is the promise you make to your customers. This includes the name, symbol, design, and content that identifies your goods and services as distinct from those of other sellers. The key elements that make up a brand include brand name, logo design, tagline or catchphrase, product packaging, visual identity system, and voice in advertising. By creating a brand that is aligned on every channel, you can better communicate with your audience.
2. Determine Your Priorities
As you begin outlining a branding strategy, it is critical that you identify your company priorities. What is the most important factor that contributes to your growth and development? What are you trying to accomplish with your branding strategy?
These are the questions that you need to answer before executing a plan. Once you know what you want, it will be easier for you to develop a plan that leads to success. This is important because it allows you to allocate resources to the right places. For example, if you need to expand your brand across multiple states, you can determine where you can reduce and increase ad spend in order to reach the most relevant audience.
3. Create The Ideal Customer Persona
An ideal customer persona is a fictional representation of your target customer. Having this fictional character in mind helps marketers and business owners develop a message that effectively speaks to the audience.
The process of creating an ideal customer persona starts by asking some questions: What are the needs, interests, motivations, and goals of your target customer? What are their demographics? Where do they live? What are their values? Who do they trust? How much money do they make?
The answers to these questions can give you insights into what type of messaging will most effectively capture the attention of your customer.
4. Accentuate Your Unique Value Proposition
There are many ways that businesses can establish a unique value proposition. You may create innovative products, offer customizable services, or develop products that are more effective than competitors. However, the most effective way to differentiate yourself from your competition is by finding and emphasizing your unique values.
Your uniqueness might come from the quality of your products or services. It might come from the quality of customer service that you provide. Whatever it is, you should make sure that you are putting it on display so that customers know exactly what sets you apart from other businesses in your industry. By accentuating this unique service or product, you can help customers begin to see why they need to choose you over your competitors.
5. Streamline Your Messaging
In order to effectively communicate, you must have a clear understanding of your brand and messaging. This is a process that can be difficult to do on your own. In order to ensure that there is a cohesive voice and tone for your brand, there must be an understanding of your goals from every member of the department.
There are many tools out there that can help streamline this part of the branding process for both small and large companies alike. In addition, there are many third party agencies, like RocketDog, that can help identify gaps in communication.
6. Make Sure Your Brand Guidelines Accurately Represent You
After the fundamentals are established, a playbook of brand guidelines are the next step in developing an overarching strategy. These guidelines should include how to use your logo and assets, the details of your standard color scheme, your messaging strategy, and the mood of your imagery.
The guidelines should be clear and concise, outlining what you want to represent and how you want to present it. These guidelines should include the tone and voice of the company, as well as any other design elements that might need to be included, such as colors, fonts, imagery, etc.
These guidelines help you target your ideal audience and identify what channels you want to use for marketing purposes. These guidelines will act as a framework and outline for all initiatives that you engage in.
A brand strategy is much more than just logos and colors, it is the way you communicate your value to customers. By spending time developing the mission, vision, and core values of your brand, you will be better able to streamline your messaging and communicate your values to customers. If it is difficult to align both internally and externally, consider working with a third party marketing agency that can help identify gaps in messaging and streamline the proposed strategy.