Why do people prefer buying even an older model of iPhone at a high price when they can easily buy a similar or better Android model at the same price or lower?
The answer is brand matters. Apple, which has established itself as one of the best phone brands, remains a must-have for any technology lover and status-conscious individual.
But even such world-wide famous brands like Apple, Nike, Coca Cola weren't built in one day. These brands are the result of long-term, well-planned brand strategies. They have invested much money and time in setting up their brand image.
For any brand to succeed, it needs a strong brand strategy. But what is brand strategy? And how do you come up with one? That's what this post will address.
What is a brand strategy?
Anything and everything about your company that represents it is its brand in the eyes of the audience.
All businesses need a brand strategy. Starting from the company's goals, proper segmentation of target audience to brand marketing means and tactics - all of these are a part of your brand strategy.
The tone of voice, colors, themes, and other visual elements that will be associated with the brand should also be in the brand strategy.
If you're using pink and white as your customized website theme colors, this color code should be used in social media posts, ads, posters, flyers, and other visual elements.
And this standard should be mentioned in the brand strategy. So that for every graphic and visual design, you know what colors to use.
Brand strategy acts as a standard for all your branding efforts.
Why Do Businesses Need Brand Strategy?
When you combine all your branding elements, like your logo, mission statement, visual elements, etc., into one comprehensive document - that's your brand strategy.
But why do you need to assign resources and manpower to develop one? And why are companies working so hard to have a well-defined brand strategy? Let's address these questions with the following points.
For Maintaining Consistency
It all comes back to maintaining consistency in how your brand is presented.
The colors, the fonts, the themes - they should all be coherent and consistent across different platforms. When repeatedly using a tagline in a social media ad, it should be the same tagline used for email campaigns and other visuals.
This is important because when customers come across your brand repeatedly, they start recognizing you without even thinking.
Helps Your Employees Understand The Company
When employees are aware of the objectives and goals that you have set for your company, it's easier for them to carry out tasks that are in line with these objectives.
If your employees understand what kind of branding efforts to undertake and how to do it, then they can help expand the reach of your company and increase customer loyalty.
Whether to run a paid advertisement campaign or start a blog - these decisions become easier for your employees to make when they are aware of what you want to achieve.
In short, it increases productivity.
When you have a well-defined brand strategy, it becomes easier to track and measure the success of different strategies.
You can review what marketing campaigns were successful in meeting your objectives and which ones could use some improvements. This makes it easy for you to make the necessary adjustments and keep on making progress toward achieving your goals.
Plus, when it comes to your employees, you know precisely who to reward for their efforts and who to warn for not meeting the standards.
You can quickly identify which strategies were successful due to the efforts of your employees and reward them.
Suppose your marketing team developed an amazing advertisement campaign that helped increase your sales by 10%. You can reward them for their hard work.
Helps Get More Investors
The last, but not the most minor reason why you need a brand strategy is to get more investors.
When your brand has a defined mission, vision, and effective marketing efforts charted out, it looks more attractive to potential investors.
They seem to deem you more reliable and more likely to succeed in your venture.
Plus, the fact that you have invested in developing a brand strategy indicates that they can trust you with their money because it shows you're serious.
Plus, when they have access to your company's past performance and successes in the form of metrics, they feel secure investing in your brand.
Tips For Creating An Effective Branding Strategy
- Recognizing your core values is of utmost importance when creating a brand strategy. The core values should reflect what your company stands for, and your vision and mission should align with these values.
- Have a brand promise message in line with your core values. This message should be simple and concise so that customers can understand it easily. It's also important to have a distinctive voice in all your content, be it website copy or social media posts. Your voice should be consistent yet unique.
- Highlight what makes you different from the rest. For example, take Tesla. The fact that they're highlighting fully electric cars with autonomous driving features makes them stand out from other car companies.
- Think of Your brand as a living person. When you create a brand strategy, think of it as creating an identity for a living person. You must consider all the elements that make up this person and give them a personality.
Learn From Some Examples
It's not possible to present the complete brand strategies of any brand as an example since no brand would share its core elements and strategies with the public.
But you can take inspiration from bits and parts of the branding strategies of some successful brands.
Tesla's brand purpose is clear and straightforward. They are very much focused on clean energy and sustainability. They try to ensure that their products serve this purpose and stick to it in all branding efforts.
So their brand purpose line is - "To accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy."
This line is mentioned on their website and shared in all their campaigns. The reason for their existence is clearly defined and communicated in one line to customers and employees alike.
There's something called brand personality, which falls under brand strategy as well.
The brand personality is breathing life into your brand by giving it a personality.
And Harley Davidson boasts of having one of the most successful brand personalities. It brings its brand to life with this line - "Harley-Davidson has a macho, rebellious, America-loving, freedom-seeking personality."
Harley Davidson has done a fantastic job of creating a coherent brand personality that attracts its customers.
Chalk Out Your Brand Strategy
A brand can't survive nor flourish without a well-defined brand strategy.
Just like a living person, your brand should also have an identity and values that are communicated through all its branding efforts.
It's essential to keep in mind that brand strategy is not just a static document. It needs to be updated as the company evolves and grows. So make sure you update it accordingly.
And most importantly, having a brand strategy makes it easier to measure success and stay on the right track.
Keeping all these points in mind, you would be able to create an effective brand strategy for your company as well.