5 Essential Factors to Consider to Build a Perfect Brand Strategy
Are you only interested in making transactions? Or are you looking to establish a unique brand image in the present marketplace? If you’re determined to achieve the latter, you need to have a solid brand strategy in place.
If you’re a newly launched business, your brand strategy is even more important because it will have a massive impact on the long-term performance of your business. In this guide, we’ll take you through some powerful factors to consider to build a perfect brand strategy:
1 – Knowledge of Your Customer
Many marketers believe that their brand story has to be all about them, when in fact, it should be about their customers. It’s about who your customer is, what drives them, what they want, and so on. You come later in the story to decide how you’re going to address the customers’ needs.
Thus, knowing your ideal customer is the most important factor when building your brand strategy. Start by defining the brand persona, thinking about the demographics and psychographics of your customer. Brainstorm on what they need and what motivates them to create an initial fictional person representing your target audience.
Once you’ve developed a brand persona, think about why your potential customers may hesitate to work with you. If you’re aware of the different reasons that may deter them from choosing you, you might actually be able to influence their decisions.
In other words, the more you know what’s going on in your customer’s mind, the better you’ll be able to inspire their decisions.
2 – Brand Positioning
Brand positioning clarifies what differentiates your brand from the competition. The ultimate goal of brand positioning is to make your customers feel that you provide more value than the alternatives. In other words, you give your customers reasons to purchase from you.
List down your strengths, including what past customers liked or appreciated about your brand or service. Think about the functional aspects, such as what benefits you offer that others don’t. Add any features that make you unique such as any proprietary product, services, or process.
Then, answer what’s that single characteristic you want to be known for and how you want your customers to describe you? Answers to these questions will be extremely helpful in shaping your product and service strategies later on.
However, it’s okay not to have answered those questions perfectly. A perfect brand strategy takes time to build and it’s an ongoing process. Engagement with clients or customers should make things clearer over time and you’ll be able to shape your positioning in a better manner.
As long as you remain consistent, your marketing messages will become more and more attractive to your targeted customers and you’ll be able to outplay the competition.
3 – Brand Personality
Now you have personified your customer and conveyed what set’s you apart from other brands, it’s time to personify your brand. This involves adding human characteristics to your brand to tap the emotions of your customer.
It’s important to understand that no matter how valuable your products are, people prefer brands they like and that inspire them. That’s where emotional branding comes into play.
Your brand personality should strongly click to the buyer persona you defined earlier. The more relevant and powerful your brand personality is, the more you’ll be able to influence the customer’s buying behavior on an emotional level.
Once you have a clear picture of your brand personality, you need to effectively communicate it to your target audience. There are probably more channels that communicate your brand personality than you think.
Your visual identity, your voice tone, how you respond on emails, your brand colors, the type of content you post on social media, etc., all shape your brand personality in the minds of your customers. Hence, make sure that all these elements align well with your brand personality.
4 – Brand Values
Brand values refer to what you stand for and what you stand against. Brand values prove quite valuable down the road because when people realize that you share the values they hold, they’ll choose you and stay loyal.
These are values you explicitly want your customers to know about, and they will differentiate you from other brands. For example, if you’re using phrases like ‘delivering value’, ‘value our customers’, or ‘commitment to quality’, etc., you won’t be able to make the desired impact. These lines have become so common that they no longer make a difference.
Your brand values should be the ones you’re genuinely living up to in your business every day. One great strategy to figure out what you stand for is to consider what you stand against. For instance, employing African American staff members is a clear indication that you truly stand for the ‘Black Lives Matter’ notion.
5 – Brand Essence
Brand essence is all about the emotional reasons why people go for your brand. It’s a one to 3-word statement describing your brand. Here are some popular examples to clarify the concept:
- Nike: Authentic Athletic Performance
- Apple: Think Different
- BMW: Driving Pleasure
- L’Oreal Paris: Feminine Confidence
What is that one feeling that you want your audience to associate with your brand?
Brand essence is not something you can fake; it has to be authentic, repeatable and long-term. Once you’re able to create that essential feeling, other critical functions such as making product decisions, designing marketing campaigns, and writing tag lines become incredibly easy.
And there you have it! All the factors to consider to build a perfect brand strategy. Whether you’re launching a startup or expanding an existing business, your brand strategy is vital to long-term success.
Branding is not something you can buy off a shelf. It takes considerable introspection and research to set up a powerful brand strategy. Keep the above-explained factors in mind while devising your brand strategy, and everything should progress smoothly!