Image and marketing is key to getting your business to those lofty heights most business owners aspire to. The thing that reinforces and interweaves through all of it is your company’s brand. It’s the attitude and the imagery. It defines the reputation you’re building and the essence of what you communicate to the customer. But it’s not something that suddenly pops up overnight. It’s something you need to put the time and effort into building. A strategy that reaches through the whole company. We’re going to see how you do that.
Before we get to what your brand says about you, we need to look at what goes into the brand. If what the brand says about you is the output of an equation, then your unique selling proposition is the input. So it’s vital you have that input. You need to take a good, hard look at the processes and services of your company compared to your competitors. You need to find the way you deliver beyond them. Whether it’s a focus on customer service or an expansive use of technology and apps. If you can’t find one, you need to start integrating one, quick.
What your brand says about you
Once you’ve identified the fuel for your brand, it’s a matter of making sure your brand communicates it well. An immediate way to start translating your values into your brand is through visual design. Design that runs through your logo, website and beyond. The nature of that design, even the color, can say different things about you and your business. For example, red can evoke strong emotion, appetite and passion. It increases appetite and urgency. Meanwhile, blue evokes peace, organization and professionalism. It’s productive and non-invasive. The psychology of visual design is key to a strong brand.
No matter the format
One point we’re going to start drilling here is that it’s important your branding goes into every aspect of company communication. Not just the website. Not just the logo. But your business cards, your trade show stalls, even your office should have your brand in mind. Do not go in a different direction with fliers because they suit your aesthetic tastes at that moment. Unless you’re strategically launching a different image. Branding is about carrying a strong image through the whole of the company, so keep it on message, whether it’s online or offline.
More than just images
It’s not all about the visual appeal, however. Visuals will be a deciding factor in whether someone pays more attention to your company or your products. But you need to make sure that transition from interest to interaction goes smoothly, too. You need to keep your text consistent with your branding. Whether it’s on social media or a corporate blog. Creating content takes expertise and time. Creating branding content takes even more time and a degree of talent. Part of that talent is being able to find the voice for your company.
Finding your voice
Taking your branding into text format can be difficult for some. There’s the economy of communication at play. A picture saying a thousand words. When writing, it can be harder to carry across the same focus that your imagery evokes. Finding a ‘voice’ to fit your company can make it a lot easier. Try identifying archetypes in a conversation. Imagine your ideal target customer. Then imagine your company as a person. Who are they? In what way do they speak to one another? Warm? Professional? Comforting? What do they want from you and how do you communicate it?
Consistency is key
The theme of consistency in your branding has been repeated (consistently) throughout this article. For good reason. Branding requires a degree of immersion, even a bit of delusion on the part of the audience. As soon as you break voice/brand/character, it’s gone. Your business no longer has the power of that branding. So when your team is developing content, make sure that content is thoroughly checked for branding reasons as well as policy. Tools like digital asset management can make it all the easier to manage all your content in one place for just that reason.
Branding needs to be entirely defined and entirely incorporated. Everything that comes from your company needs to have the key identifiers of the brand attached. Imagery. Language. Voice. Run a tight system where every communicative resource is passed under the microscope to ensure it fits the branding. Make sure your company is steeped in it and it will serve you well.