Is your brand heading in the right direction?
A powerful brand is one of the most valuable assets your business can possess. It’s more than a logo – it’s what connects you with the hearts and minds of your audience and is the perception of who, what, why and how well you do things. It can be expressed in four distinct ways – products/services, communications, staff culture and premises. Get these things right and you will reap the rewards. Get them wrong and you could lose sales and devalue your business. Take a look at your communications and ask yourself… “Does our ‘brand promise’ really match the perceptions our audience has of us?”.
Good is the enemy of great – The vast majority of good companies remain just that – Good but not great.
The foundations for success
In this increasingly crowded multi-channel world, recognition and credibility are vital. A powerful identity helps to cut through the clutter – to attract, engage and communicate with your target audience. Start by observing the opposition and differentiating yourself. Once defined, your identity must be applied with clarity, strength and consistency across all communications for it to be recognised as a credible and trusted brand.
Consistency isn’t boring – it can still be creative, but remember to have clear guidelines on logo usage, size, position, fonts, colours, photography and tone of voice. This still leaves room to be different without damaging a brand’s effectiveness. Does your logo, website and printed collateral convey your brand in a positive, clear and consistent manner that brings credibility to your business?
Brands that deliver functional, economic and emotional benefits are more likely to achieve brand success.
The rewards in brand heaven
Trust leads to authenticity and loyalty, ultimately benefiting the organisation – so growing a brand is an investment with compelling economic advantages that deliver greater returns, company robustness and shareholder value. A trusted organisation held in high esteem is rewarded with increased sales and loyalty that drives repeat business. It is a well known fact that people rarely buy from a brand they’ve never heard of, even if it is less expensive, because there is a risk attached. But they are willing to pay more for a product or service that has earned their trust.
Here are some interesting statistics:
- Colour increases brand recognition by 80% which directly links to consumer confidence.
- 50% of customers will try a new product from a brand they favour.
- 63% of customers need to hear company claims 3-5 times before they believe it.
- 89% of B2B manufacturing marketers cite increased brand awareness as a goal for content marketing, compared to 85% for sales, and 80% for lead generation.
- 72% of marketers think branded content is more effective than advertising in a magazine; 69% say it is superior to direct mail and PR.
- 80% of consumers say “authenticity of content” is the most influential factor in their decision to become a follower of a brand.
It takes time and effort to reach brand heaven but the rewards are worth it. No single approach will get you there, so the right mix of marketing communications is essential. A brand is your reputation – good or bad, it can spread quickly across all channels as people talk and it becomes self-perpetuating.
Remember: It is significantly harder to repair a bad reputation than it is to build a good one.
(Sources: Nielsen, Marketing Tech Blog, NJIT, CUBE, Content Marketing Institute, AdWeek, NewsCred, HBR, ClickFox, Smart Customer Service, VentureBeat, ColorCom, Landor, Pardot)