Establishing A Brand Identity
Brand identity is what makes you instantly recognisable to your customers. It’s what sets you apart from the hundreds of other companies and businesses offering sometimes identical, or at least, very similar services or products. It is how you communicate to the consumer in your target audience, and that hopefully, makes them not only want to come back for more, but even acts as your sales pitch through referrals.
Now when consumers are said to be exposed to up to 5000 brands every.single.day, spending time to establish your brand’s unique identity, is crucial to its success in an incredibly saturated market. All good brands help consumers bond on an emotional and often moral level. Giving your brand an identity, as if it was human, is a great way of establishing a good starting point. Give it a personality. For example, when you think of Apple what comes to mind? Creative, fun and savvy. Mercedes exudes business, corporate and luxurious. Once your brand personality has been established, think of whether this actually resonates with your target audience. Pitching a new skateboard brand to young men in corporate language with crisp minimalistic logos, isn’t quite going to cut it. This is all to do with the development of your brand ‘voice’; who is it going to be speaking to? You need to spend time really connecting and laying core value groundwork; your companies core philosophies, statement messages and offering should be easily determinable through your brand identity, as well as WHY your brand should be chosen above the rest; ie: what sets you apart, be it affordability, transparency or customer service.
Which brings me to my next point; make sure you know your target audience and competition, inside out. This will not only help you get innovative with your brand but also allows you to learn from the market leaders with regards to successful marketing strategies in your product field, from SEO to advertising. Getting to know your target audience with regards to age, gender social standings and profession will be incredibly useful when it comes to creative design. The colours, shapes, iconography, typography and copy used should strongly appeal to your target audience and also be consistent across all types of marketing platforms. Consistency is key with brand identity, not just with regards to design and graphics, but mission statement, values and customer experience.
Even when you’re happy with the brand identity you’ve created, its vital to have a great PR strategy to give your brand the exposure it needs to flourish. Raising brand awareness is crucial, especially in the beginning phases; think extensive social media content, paid television and Youtube ads as well as email marketing.
Don’t think that once a brand is established and successfully with regards to customer loyalty and sales, the brand identity is a fixed phenomenon. Strong brand identity sticks to the companies core values, philosophies and messages, but also cleverly adapts to the ever evolving markets. It’s this flexibility that sets brands apart from one another, where some get left behind targeting an audience who’s problems have evolved and those who base their brand on consistent market and consumer analysis.
Starting developing a brand? Get researching.