As a branding agency, we’re driven by the goal of translating all of the various aspects of a company’s vision into a clear and consistent branding strategy. But what happens next? As we grow with our clients, the key to success is living that brand.
Consider your favourite brands. Or look at some of the largest brands in the world — Starbucks, Apple, Nike..
What makes them so great? Why are these companies worth billions of dollars? Distribution is an easy answer, but they would still be nothing without the importance they each place on ensuring every interaction with their brand is consistent and positive. They’re unique in their message (whether it be about a great cup of coffee, constant innovation, or ultimate performance), but these brands live up to their name and their brand’s promise every time they serve their customers.
What branding should mean to your business
Whatever the drive of your organization, a consistent message must resonate with everyone that comes in contact with your business. Truly living your brand comes for having an intimate understanding of your organization’s vision, goals, and each of the channels you interact with your customers through. This is why it’s so important to invest in branding that will not only make your business look great, but also allow it to more easily provide a consistent experience, and facilitate your growth. By defining all of these aspects in your brand book, anyone responsible for representing your brand will have a clear reference to exactly what that responsibility entails.
Defining and managing expectations
Many companies claim to be the best at what it is they do, but how often have you tried “the best sandwich” and found it to be just okay? This is because words on their own are easy, and delivering such a promise is not. Most companies that struggle to be successful with their products are concerned with pleasing their customers, but haven’t put the effort into really understanding their brand and how customers see them.
Consider the negative review you’d leave for that same sandwich shop. Would you react the same way if they had made a more modest claim? Or if, even with a lacklustre sandwich, they had made the experience memorable otherwise? The experience, and the customer’s interpretation of it — it’s all branding. Truly, you don’t have to claim to be the best to be successful. It’s far less important to be the best than it is to be consistent.
Conversely, a company’s products can be the best on the market — but they may struggle to gain popularity or stay relevant if their customer support (for example) is anything but. Even if they have the best product, everyone from engineers, to product managers, to sales representatives, and customer support reps all have to be speaking the same language — the one the organization agreed would lead them to success. The brand promise.
Living your brand means backing everything your business does up with your name. It’s not really about the big brands. Great branding strategy is incredibly powerful for businesses of any size. And if you’re looking to set you business apart, it’s the crucial first step.
As we always say, your brand speaks for you when you can’t.
Ready to really define your branding strategy? Or have more questions about what’s involved? Get in touch!