In an increasingly crowded and competitive market, a strong brand is a business’s critical need-to-have. You need more than just a great product to connect and engage with your audience, grow your customer base, and earn their loyalty, and advocacy. Furthermore, you need a recognizable brand with a unique value proposition and a strong identity to help prospects and customers resonate with it. A strong image distinguishes you from the competitors and puts your brand on the map.
Question is, how do you do it?
Businesses tend to focus on the operational aspects of the day-to-day grind, which overshadows the “brand building.” Start by identifying where your brand is currently lagging. Once you pinpoint your brand’s key improvement areas, you can take action to change things for the better. In this blog, we talk about some strategies to do exactly that!
Read on to strengthen your brand’s voice, identity, and equity.
Compare Your Brand Values to your Brand Message
Does your brand message align with its values, act with integrity, take diversity seriously, leverage collective genius via collaboration, and focus on relationship-building with customers, opposed to just transactions? There is a barrage of questions that will plague the brand custodians’ mind when they get together to define the image. Let’s take a step-by-step approach to deal with them.
Your values indicate what your brand stands for. The questions we have put up will help you in identifying the brand values that define and differentiate your brand from the others. The values however, need to get aligned with the message or the words your brand wishes to put across. If your message fails to align with these values, it will dilute the brand’s voice and equity. To bring your values and communication into alignment, start by reviewing your website, marketing collateral, social media content, and any other channel that carries your brand’s messaging.
Now ask yourself: are the message and values incongruent? If not, your brand will never reach the level of recognition and equity you aimed for. A perfect example to look upto is Coca-Cola. Three of Coca-Cola’s brand values are leadership, collaboration, and diversity. Their website copy reflects these values perfectly, with content like “refreshing the world and making a difference,” “working toward a better-shared future,” and “creating a world without waste.”
Review Your Brand Story
A strong brand can tell a compelling story.
If you have closely followed Simon Sinek then you might know the fundamentals – “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe.” And here’s when the brand story comes in. Your story tells your audience who you are, what you do, and most importantly, why you do it. These details impact your audience and take your brand to the next level of recognition, recall, and even preference.
People buy into experiences more than products or services. Stories play a critical role in eliciting positive emotions which deliver the experiences people crave. They also humanize your brand, capture attention, create empathy, and compel action. Around 55% of buyers consider buying from a brand if they love their brand story. There are brands that capture the audience’s attention with an engaging story and leave a lasting impression.
Land Rover and Apple are one of those brands. The automobile company Land Rover created a stunning video that recited a story, aptly titled The Land of Land Rover. The narrative talked about drivers who rely on these vehicles to traverse the remote areas in the Himalayas to carry and deliver supplies. The Himalayan drivers humanize the brand Land Rover and give it a unique voice and strength. Another gripping tale comes from Apple’s 1984 brand campaign, which remains iconic even today. The story positively associates Apple’s products with leaders and revolutionaries who are willing to break the status quo to create something extraordinary. Here Apple establishes itself as a brand known for standing against the tide and creating amazing products.
Apple and Land Rover identified improvement areas in brand communication. Their communication touched and created a perception of the products adding value to lives. To achieve this, you need to create an ideal customer profile and buyer personas. Understand what they care about, and identify their pain points.
Does your brand give them what they care about? Does it address their challenges?
If you answered “no” to either question, you need to analyze how you can align what customers need with what you can provide. Get into their mindset and understand how they interact with your brand. Ask yourself how you want them to feel throughout their buyer’s journey. Based on this understanding, you can find ways to design your brand story and develop your brand’s messaging strategy. Make sure your story and messaging are tailored to your audience. Together, these elements will help you deliver compelling experiences that create a unique niche for your brand.
Ford has done this very well almost since its inception. Between 1908 and the 1960s, Ford’s primary audience was older men, and its brand messaging reflected their needs and aspirations. But since 2013, the company has shifted its attention – and its messaging – to its new target audience of young male and female millennials.
In one study, nearly 75% of global consumers said that brand origin is a crucial purchase driver, which shows that you need to develop an amazing brand that attracts people and speaks to them. Strong branding starts with identifying the current improvement areas – and then acting quickly to fix them. We hope you find the strategies suggested here useful.
Ergode’s AI-powered solution has helped thousands of e-commerce brands develop and strengthen their brand identities to quickly scale up. Brands who once were finding it difficult to grab customer attention, can now track every pulse. This is accomplished by the team of experts who knit a great brand story and position the brand in the marketplace. To know how we can nurture your brand, contact us.