There’s no doubting the immense value a brand holds for an organization. The benefits of strong branding are virtually endless. It has the power to drive consumer behavior, reflect company values and product quality, and define consumer expectations. Not to mention it attracts a loyal customer base and increases sales.
Understanding the complexities of a brand is key to developing brand equity. While many confuse the concept of a brand with its visual representation (logo, trademark, etc.), this is merely a symbol that represents the brand through communication.
A solid brand persona is so much more than a visual. It epitomizes the way customers and stakeholders think and feel about your company, all while conveying meaning, value, and experiences through your products or services.
Branding Helps Customers and Stakeholders Grasp Key Product Aspects
There are several ways in which companies can leverage their brands to help consumers, resellers, and the public better understand their organization, products, and services. These often include:
- Product or service attributes such as what the product is made of, how it is delivered, and the product quality
- Customer benefits and expectations
- Company culture and values
- Images or “personalities” that evoke emotional responses
- User personas that identify the target customers for the product or service
In today’s digital world, extending your branding online is imperative to creating a strong brand identity for your business.
3 Elements of a Brand that Resonates
Creating a brand that resonates involves the careful construction of three distinct brand elements: positioning, persona, and identity.
The first brand element to consider is your positioning in the marketplace. What exactly is it that sets you apart from the competition? Your positioning becomes the strategy that drives your brand. It’s the brand element that assists in managing your brand’s reputation and public image.
Think about these questions:
- What influences our target audience in their buying decisions?
- What is the market in which customers buy this product category, what part of the market will we sell to, and how many consumers are in that part?
- How do we communicate with customers about our brand?
- How will customers invest in our brand and how will we deliver products and services?
A solid brand positioning strategy helps your business stand out among the competition and assists in the creation of your brand persona, which is the next element.
A brand persona addresses the image the brand holds in the minds of stakeholders. Your brand persona may include attitudes, values, or personality traits that you highlight to better engage with your consumer base.
Ask yourself the following:
- What emotions do we want people to feel about our brand and/or about themselves when they invest in our brand?
- How do we want customers to relate to our brand?
Creating a strong brand persona helps to connect with your target audience. When properly honed, it can help direct your digital marketing efforts to reach your brand’s maximum potential.
Defining your brand's positioning and persona provides the base you need to give your brand an identity that truly resonates with your target audience. Your brand identity will touch on anything people see, hear, or read about you.
Consider the following for your brand identity:
More than just your company's name, your brand’s identity includes any names you’ve chosen for your products, product families, or various levels of your organization.
Your logo is a visual portrayal of your brand. A strong logo needs no other indicator to be recognized. The golden arches will always be recognized as McDonalds and the swoosh as Nike. A brand’s logo should reflect the values and personality of your company and connect with your audience.
What do you think of when you hear “I’m loving it?” What about “Just do it?” That’s the power of a brand’s tagline. Carefully craft a phrase that summarizes either the persona or the benefits of your brand.
How your product is displayed for your consumers speaks volumes on your brand identity. There are many ways in which a brand can sell products to consumers. You may choose to operate in a brick and mortar or keep your business completely digital, shipping products directly to consumers.
Some companies will sell solely through branded storefronts, while others exclusively through resellers. Some will even create unique brands for different levels of product quality, or price and sell each through separate channels to avoid comparisons.
Regardless of how you choose to sell, the bottom line is this: how consumers interact with your product matters. It affects the perception of the brand.
From generating product and service awareness to guiding consumers through the sales cycle, a brand’s communication defines consumer interaction through every stage of the purchase and beyond.
With the advent of modern digital technologies, brand communication has drastically changed. While traditionally, a brand’s communication was dominated by the mass media, direct mail, or sales brochures, digital avenues (company websites, social media, email) have become essential platforms for brands to communicate through. Leveraging digital technology provides a great amount of control to brand owners to convey the exact message they desire.
Communicating your brand identity through digital avenues requires the right team to create a digital brand. Digital advertising, social media, and email marketing should complement your offline marketing strategies. Create images, stories, messages, and digital media with designers and content creators. Produce customer service response systems. Merchandise your eCommerce store with web architects, developers, and designers.
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Become a Branding Specialist Today
Navigating the elements of branding can be a daunting task for many, but the demand for digital marketing experts is exploding. Career prospects have never been greater in the field of digital marketing, and at Simplilearn, we’re here to teach you what you need to seize the potential of the tools you need to get you into this exciting field.
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