WHAT IS BRANDING?
Branding is the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product or service from competitors, aiming to create a lasting impression in the minds of customers.
- An effective brand strategy gives you a major edge in increasingly competitive markets. Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from that of your competitors. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.
- Your brand strategy is how, what, where, when and to whom you plan on communicating and delivering on your brand messages. What you communicate visually and verbally is an essential part of your brand strategy.
- Consistent, strategic branding leads to a strong brand equity, which means the added value brought to your company’s products or services that allows you to charge more for your brand than what identical, unbranded products command.
- Branding is customer driven, understanding how branding works begins with understanding the customer, both existing and potential. There are three essential steps when creating a brand. Ensure that the brand meets a need in the mind of the customer, firmly establish the brand, and elicit the favorable response of the customer to the brand identity.
It requires, at the very least, that you answer the questions below:
- What is your company’s mission?
- What are the benefits and features of your products or services?
- What do your customers and prospects already think of your company?
- What qualities do you want them to associate with your company?
HOW DOES BRANDING BENEFIT YOU?
There are a number of benefits a strong brand can bring to your business:
1. Recognition and Loyalty
The main benefit of branding is that customers are much more likely to remember you when they are looking to purchase a product or service.
- A strong brand name and logo/image helps to keep your brand’s image in the mind of your potential customers.
- If your brand sells products that are often bought on impulse, a customer recognising your brand could mean they are likely to trust you with unfamiliar products.
- If a customer is happy with one of your brand’s products or services, branding will help to build customer loyalty across your brand’s products and services.
2. Image of Experience and Reliability
- A strong brand creates an image of being well established and well known.
- A known brand is more likely to be seen as experienced in it products or services, and will generally be seen as more reliable and trustworthy than an unknown brand.
3. Often Leads to the Sale of Multiple Products
- If you have a strong brand, it allows you to link together several different products or services you provide.
- You can put your brand name on every product or service you sell, meaning that customers for one product or service will be more likely to buy another product or service from you.
THE PROCESS-STAGES AND TIMELINE
We will work closely along side you and your team once we have received a detailed brief from you. There will be 6 stages in for your branding project.
1. Brand strategy
- We will have an initial workshop with you where we will help you define your core statements/key messaging:
a. Positioning: a short, specific, definitive statement of the unique position the business hopes to earn relative to other brands in the minds of its audiences
b. Purpose: the business’ functional reason for being: what it does, makes or provides every day
c. Mission: beyond economics what is your business objective
d. Composition: this defines the principal parts of the business and how they relate to one another to achieve the brand’s purpose
e. Values: this identifies the specific, distinctive and fundamental behavioural values which differentiate the business
f. Character: this identifies the preferred style and manner of the business – tone of voice.
- This process usual takes 4 weeks.
- We will create a sample of 6 different logos for you to choose from. Once finalised we recommend you place it everywhere.
- This process usually takes 1 week.
2. Brand Messaging
- From the core statements/key messages discussed in the brand strategy workshop where we have discussed what you want to communicate about your brand, we will create a brand message (tagline/strapline) which is memorable, meaningful and concise, while capturing the essence of your brand.
- This process usually takes 1 week.
4. Brand Integration and Brand Guidelines
- Branding extends to all your marketing collateral from your letterheads, documents, e-mail signature, business cards, to your website and social media posts.
- It is important that we create brand guidelines for your company that reflect your brand. These brand guidelines should be applied to all written communication and incorporated in the visual imagery of all materials, online and off. We will work with you on defining these and creating your brand guidelines.
- This process usually takes 4 weeks
5. Design templates and Brand Standards
- We will create brand templates for your marketing materials.
- It is important that you use the same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel throughout. It does not to be fancy, just consistent.
- This process usually takes 2 weeks.
6. Brand Promise
- It is important that you remain true to your brand customers won’t return to you or refer you to someone else if you don’t deliver on your brand promise.
Important to remember that the following factors determine the strength of your brand:
1. Audience Knowledge
- The best brands have a thorough understanding of the demographics of their target market, what their interests are, and how they communicate.
- Understanding the target market is critical because it provides direction for the tone and reach of a marketing campaign, along with the overall identity of a brand, while helping to create an organic, human connection between a business and its audience.
- Trying to appeal to everyone (ie, ignoring the concept of a target market) can be counterproductive, resulting in a brand to become diluted. Finding the right branding approach requires first understanding the target market.
- Establishing a brand identity requires something distinctive.
- Creating an identity within a niche doesn’t demand a revolutionary idea. It simply needs to have one special thing that separates it from the competition.
- Do you know what your unique product, service, or selling point is within your niche? If not, start there when building your branding strategy.
- While it’s certainly possible to build a brand in the short-term without passion, it’s almost impossible to sustain it in the long run.
- That passion leads to enthusiasm and genuine joy, which is infectious. Consumers often become just as enthusiastic about a product or service, leading to word of mouth advertising and referrals.
- When consumers come back to a business for repeat sales, they usually expect to receive the same level of quality as they did the first time.
- No one wants to deal with a company they can’t rely on for consistency.
With so many industries being saturated with competitors, inconsistency is often enough of a reason for consumers to take their business elsewhere.
- Gaining an edge in today’s business world isn’t easy. When it comes to the major players in any industry, none simply sit back and hope that their consumers will do the work for them.
- Instead, they tend to be the movers and shakers who work tirelessly toward building and optimizing their brand, going above and beyond consumer expectations.
- The end result tends to be a brand that is continually on the cutting edge of its industry.
- Another big part of being recognized as a distinctive, successful brand is the ability to reach consumers through multiple channels.
- There are more tools than ever before which offer any company a chance at establishing their brand. By developing a presence on networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+, anyone is able to reach almost any consumer. We can provide a content marketing service to help you with your need to develop a presence online.
HOW IS SUCCESS MEASURED?
Consistency plays a vital role in the success of your brand. It is important to remember when your branding project with us is complete, we recommend that you are consistent. If you can’t do this, all our hard work and your attempts at establishing a brand will fail.
There are a number of indirect metrics you can use to reliably discover how your audience is relating to your brand. Using these emotional-value metrics, we can gather objective data on the success of our branding efforts and learn what really works.
The 3 key metrics for measuring the success of a branding campaign, these are interaction, engagement and participation.
- Interaction is the starting point of any relationship. Any time a user expresses some connection with a message and an affiliation for what it has to say, that’s interaction.
- Measuring interaction is simple: Has a customer taken action based on your emotional-value offering? For example, Does someone click the link? Do they walk through the doors? Do they watch the video? Do they open the email?
- Interaction is a starting point, a place from which to launch a relationship. To discover value, you must dig deeper than clicks and likes and start uncovering the reasons behind these actions.
- Engagement is the next level of emotional-value depth. When a customer actively responds to an interaction with you, that’s engagement. Engagement is about the quality of the interaction and how far someone is willing to go once they’ve interacted with your brand.
- In order to measure engagement, track response to the things your business is asking of customers after they interact with you. Will a customer give you their email address? Do they sign up to pre-order? Do they sponsor your crowdfunding campaign? Does someone comment on your post?
- Participation is the deepest level of emotional-value in the brand-customer relationship. When a customer is truly, devotedly passionate about you and performs actions to exhibit that devotion, that’s participation.
- To measure participation can be more difficult than the other emotional-value metrics, because the behaviors are least concrete. However, people who fit the description in the above paragraph do perform certain measurable behaviors. For example, does a customer brag about their purchase? Does someone consistently show up to your events? Do they recruit others to the cause? Are they excited to identify themselves as a customer?
- This is the strongest form of brand-customer connection, because it turns regular customers into unofficial brand ambassadors.
- When someone participates they can begin to take on the identity of your brand reaching that fascinating place where terms like The line between you and your audience becomes dynamically blurred. When that line becomes blurred, your emotional-value becomes irreplaceable.
Branding is customer driven, understanding how branding works begins with understanding the customer, both existing and potential. There are three essential steps when creating a brand. It is important to ensure that the brand meets a need in the mind of the customer, firmly establish the brand, and elicit the favorable response of the customer to the brand identity.
Below are the KPIs for your branding project:
- Creation and conveyance of a clear, concise and targeted brand message
- Creation of a statement of core values
- Creation of a logo which will represent your brand
- Ensuring your branding has been extended across all your marketing material
- Creation of a brand guidelines document for the brand’s employees to refer to when creating any marketing material.
- Creation of a clear communication of a promise
- Cultivation of customer and employee loyalty
WHAT IS THE COST?
All our projects are bespoke and priced accordingly. You can get further information on prices by contacting our Neha Desai from our business development team, firstname.lastname@example.org or on T: +44 (0)20 3637 4830
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