With the volume of competition that businesses face in most industries, it’s never been more important to stand out and develop a unique identity and value proposition through strategic branding. While it’s obviously important to offer a quality product or service, effective branding is often at the heart of the companies that thrive.
Let’s explore the common characteristics of successful brands, so you can build your brand accordingly.
Great brands differentiate themselves in a way that’s clear, easy to explain, and meaningful to consumers and all other stakeholders. They hold a unique position in the market because they provide benefits competitors can’t match. Making your brand stand out from the crowd is vital to its success. Without some level of distinction, you can never become a remarkable brand.
Brands are built from the inside out. That means they originate in companies with clearly established mission, vision, and values statements that drive all their organization and branding decisions. Then they express their beliefs in everything they say and do, from the products and services they offer to the staff they attract to the communications they send into the marketplace.
The greatest brands symbolize solutions that consumers want, need, understand, and believe in, delivered with experiences that continuously exceed customer desires and expectations. Great brands understand that the promise customers believe in and count on the brand to continuously uphold is the essence of the brand. It’s the pledge upon which the brand and its reputation is built and kept.
Great brands deliver great products. They excel in product design, production, and packaging; they’re known for superb communication; and they’re heralded for excellent service before, during, and after the sale.
Just seeing the names of the world’s great brands (Apple, Google, Coco-Cola, Microsoft and more) should unlock images in your mind of each brand’s logo and possibly the brand’s tagline, musical signature, and ad look as well. That’s because each great brand puts forth a brand identity that’s simple, strong, memorable, and presented without variation on every product, in every market, through every communication, and at every consumer contact point.
A distinct and compelling brand message is at the heart of all great brand communications, regardless of the communication format or medium. Whether you encounter a great brand through its product or packaging, its print or broadcast ads, its social-media or website presence, or through a personal experience, the character of the brand is always consistent, and the core brand message never varies.
An amazing brand experience positively reinforces the brand message and promise at every single point of encounter. Great brand experiences start at the very first impression and continue without fail through the purchase deliberation, the buying process, and after the sale when awesome service generates the kind of customer brand passion that cements brand relationships for life.
Find a great brand, and you’ll find a business that’s headed by a brand champion and staffed by a team of brand fans. To develop allegiance and commitment to your brand, start with those in the highest levels of leadership and ownership positions and continue through to every staff person who has an impact on your product, promise, and brand experience.
Strong brands remain strong even as they migrate to new geographic areas, into new consumer groups, and through changing economic times and market conditions. In spite of changes in the competitive arena, economic conditions, consumer interests, or market trends, they stay relevant to consumer needs, interests, and tastes.
Another common trait of those who build great brands: They have discipline, persistence, and strong commitments to their brands. Those who get bored with their brands and start sampling new marketplace positions, new points of distinction, new looks, and new variations on their brand promises never reach the league of great and valuable brands.
The prize of sky-high brand equity goes only to those who stick to their brand messages, propositions, and promises with unwavering loyalty. Repetition may sometimes feel boring, but it builds great brands, and great brands build great value.
Building a brand is one of the most important aspects of any marketing strategy. Since this is how consumers will remember you, it’s vital to put the best version of your message out there.
For more advice about creating a brand strategy, write to us at email@example.com