This is the second half of our two-part series on developing a brand. Part 1 of this series covered the steps involved in developing a brand, as well as its components and best practices. Read part 1 of this series here if you missed it.
Now that we have considered the necessary elements to create a brand, it’s time to consider how to build your brand. There are two approaches to consider.
Strategy #1 – Building Recognition Through a Formal Launch
Launching a new brand in today’s competitive market is costly. A formal launch typically includes several marketing channels with a consistent message over a short period. This approach requires a significant portion of your marketing budget to reach your audience through online and offline outreach, affiliate marketing, and advertising. The idea is that the profits from your future sales will cover the marketing spend.
Strategy #2 – Building Recognition Through Word of Mouth
Although typically a slower process, building credibility for your brand slowly over time is less risky and commonly less costly than a formal launch. The myriad online opportunities to engage directly with users make this marketing approach attractive to smaller brands. It also provides the brand with a learn-as-you-go approach without investing much money.
Dos and Don’ts of Brand Building
No matter which strategy you use to build your brand, it is critical that you never lose sight of your brand’s purpose, mission, and values. Every user touch point throughout their journey must represent your brand consistently. Follow your brand guidelines to ensure that the logo, tagline, font, tone of voice, and messaging represent your brand in every ad, social post, blog, and email.
The channels delivering your message and your target’s stage in their journey with your brand will influence the content in your message. But every message must resonate with your user while communicating your brand’s purpose and position clearly and concisely. Following some simple branding dos and don’ts will help you not only create your brand but successfully grow it over time.
- Research and register your brand name, ensuring it is available and non-offensive.
- Use quantitative and qualitative data to define your brand purpose, values, vision, mission, and objectives.
- Document your brand purpose, values, vision, mission, and objectives.
- Research your market to develop a deep and insightful understanding of your target audience.
- Research your competition to develop a unique positioning that resonates with your audience by offering benefits that matter to them but that no other brand offers.
- Document your logo, tagline, tone of voice, and message in formal brand guidelines.
- Use your formal brand guidelines consistently at every user touchpoint.
- Build positive associations and partnerships with companies and brands that enhance your brand’s reputation.
- Keep up on industry trends and your target audience’s preferences, and ensure your brand continues to solve problems that matter most to them.
- Use consistent messaging in both online and offline channels to build your brand.
- Stray from your guidelines and plan, or even worse, neglect to build them.
- Make it difficult to recognize your brand across different channels.
- Use channels that are not engaging to your target.
- Form partnerships with influencers that don’t align with your brand values.
- Latch on to the latest trend without considering future, long-term consequences.
You Don’t Have to Go it Alone
Creating and building a successful brand requires forethought, a well-documented strategy, and actionable plans. Once documented, your strategy and plans must be followed and tracked for success, often with alterations along the way to maximize results. Equivity can help. Our pool of experienced marketing strategists and marketing assistants can plan, implement, and monitor your branding and marketing efforts. Contact us today!