When it comes to branding, some startup companies tend to only think about what their logo looks like and the colour palette that they’ll use. This cannot be more wrong, as those two are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to building a brand.
Establishing your brand involves more than just the logo and colour combinations to be used for publication materials. A brand is the company’s reputation. It is your most valuable asset as this is how customers (and future customers) view your brand and will determine their loyalty to it. Based on the branding, you may not have to do much marketing and advertising. An effective brand strategy will build a stronghold of supporters that will reel new people in.
If you want a successful brand strategy for your startup business, you should hire professionals for the branding project. But if you want to get a basic understanding of what you need to know to formulate an effective branding strategy, here are five elements you should study:
Your brand’s objective
For most companies, this refers to the amalgamation of the company’s vision and mission statements. It’s as easy as that. But for those who are not inclined to be so formal, there’s no need to worry. Some companies work on their actual vision and mission statements along the way. But what you have in mind for sure is the company’s purpose. Do you want to give your users confidence, a voice, or a feeling that they’re seen?
Determining a brand’s objective is crucial because this will determine the tone of voice and kind of visuals your brand will need. Also, this will help build a brand identity that would reach your customers. For instance, the Dhevatara Beach Hotel on Praslin Island, Seychelles wants to convey tranquillity and luxury to their patrons. This message is craftily delivered through collaterals and branding. Coming up with the logo and other illustrations would not have been possible if the resort does not have a clear idea of its objective.
The target audience
Learn everything you can about your audience. More than the usual demographic study, investigate their common interests, passions, brand affinities, and habits. This is more effective when you create a persona for the types of audience that you have. Have one for those who have deep knowledge and understanding of your brand, those who are newly converted, and those who are a stranger to the brand. Assigning a name to each persona may help in creating a strategy to reach each of them in the long run.
The Amani brand is looking to get the attention of high-net-worth individuals. To cater to their target audience, they must present themselves as polished, cultivated, and premier. Determining who you want to view your collaterals is a must as you simply cannot present a casual-looking business card to someone from a higher class.
To get to your brand’s positioning, you first have to determine your brand’s proposition. For this, simply present what you have to offer in a short phrase. Once you figure out what exactly it is you’re offering your customers, move on to what makes you stand out from the rest of your competitors.
Having an impact on your audience’s life will matter a lot. As long as it’s appropriate and relevant, include it in the essence of your brand positioning statement. Just make sure to give more focus on what makes you unique and likeable so you will always be on track no matter how far you go.
What’s your identity?
Brand identity may come off as terribly easy for some because this is what the audience sees. Brand identity is basically visual identity. This is what most startups are concerned with. By this time, you’ve probably learned that it’s only one part of a whole. Prioritizing it is not entirely wrong, but not understanding how it works with the other elements is.
Brand identity is not all about visuals. Before you post on your website and social networks, be sure that you tell a story with everything you publish. You may share something about how and why the brand was created, why you strive to do what you do with the brand or give your customers a voice. Let them share their experience with the brand and how it made an impact on their lives.
Then, don’t forget to interact with your loyal customers. Send them personalized emails or reply to their comments on your posts. Because being in touch with people is what most customers are looking for in a brand nowadays, it’s never a bad idea to engage with your customers every once in a while. However, don’t ever fake being enthusiastic.
A marketing strategy
This part focuses on your long-term plan for the brand. This is where it all comes together because how you execute everything you have planned so far will depend on this. As always, when creating a marketing strategy, focus on your customers. Create a social media content calendar for your daily posts, utilize paid ads, produce a live face-to-face event, etc. Keep improving this along the way as you get more data on what your customers are receptive to.
When you have all five thoroughly researched and ready, it’s time for implementation. Remember that the brand strategy must reflect these three things: your brand’s vision, promise, and personality.
What works for a rather successful company might not work for your own brand, and the best brand strategy for your startup may not be effective for other brands. This is because the details of the five elements previously discussed will differ from each other no matter how similar your company is to another.
In building a brand identity, consistency is key. Everything you chose from Day 1 of planning will be used for the business’ entire lifetime or until it’s time to rebrand. So, when choosing a color palette, font, tone of voice, and publication material templates, you should consider versatility and timelessness. The slogan you choose should encompass your brand’s vision, promise, and personality in a short yet catchy line.
Above all, be unique. Admire an established brand but don’t copy from them. Use them as one of your many inspirations but being genuine is a must. Creating a distinctive brand by projecting your identity and story down to the overall customer experience clearly will make a lasting impression on your market.
Building a brand strategy takes time and skill. Not everyone can do it, and that’s why it’s important to hire professionals to assist you. Luckily, our team of professionals are always glad to help your brand make a mark. Having vast knowledge and creativity in handling data and executing ideas.
No matter what you need when it comes to building your brand, right from determining your brand identity up to building a brand strategy to content creation, Take your business to the next level and create a brand strategy that lasts.
Written by Sophia Young – Content Studio