Your brand is more than your logo or your name; it should be the whole experience that your customers and potential customers receive when they come in contact with your business. Your brand strategy is the definition of what your organisation stands for – its values, the promises you make to your customers, and the personality that you deliver your work with. Yes, it includes your colours, fonts and logo, but it also has something more than these aesthetic elements, it has your tone of voice, attitude and identity.
A successful brand strategy is the key to you being able to communicate more effectively with your customers and potential customers. It should direct all of your interactions with them, and shape how you are perceived in the marketplace. You should carry out a brand strategy as the very first stage in setting up your business – before you even come up with a company name as it can inform all of the decisions you make from day one. So what are the core elements of a successful brand strategy?
It is the crux of all marketing and sales techniques – it’s easier to hit a target if you know where it is! In order to build a brand strategy, you need to know who it is supposed to appeal to. You should know what your customer needs, and how you solve that problem.
There are many ways of defining your target customer. Some businesses like to focus on an area of interest, or a geographic location, whereas others define one or more very detailed customer avatars. If you are already trading, look back at your customers to date and use what you know about them to help inform your strategy going forward.
Who are your customers considering alongside you? Who are you being measured against? Once you know this you can look at how your competitors are positioning themselves in the marketplace and make decisions on where you measure against them. Will you stand out or blend in? What sets you apart? Remember, you don’t need to focus only on your local market, look at your national competitors to see how they are positioning themselves.
The final element is the biggest of all – who are you? In order to create a successful brand strategy, you need some self-awareness regarding your business and its products or services. This should include the absolute basic information about what your business does and how it does it, as well as more ‘intangible’ information, for instance, the emotional benefits that your business provides.
Brand Strategies tend to include your brand story, and positioning statements that will inform how your staff speak to your customers and how you interact with people on social media and other public forums. All of these things are developed through a combination of knowing and understanding your target customer, your competition, and your business. So start with the basics and it will grow from there.
If you’re interested in talking to our team about how we could help you create a winning brand strategy we’d love to hear from you. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 01600 891525.