Updated: Jan 21
"Brand is the enigma, ethos and perception which surround a product, service, company or individual. " *
Some marketing experts believe that brand image can only be perceived through the eyes of your customer. My view is that brand image is curated by you - interpreted by your audience - reviewed by your feedback and constantly refined. It's fragile put a foot wrong and your brand can be quickly destroyed. Sometimes never to recover. Now more than ever we need good quality marketing whether we do this ourselves or with a marketing company.
We believe that there are a number of pillar areas to develop your brand. These are the things which support your brand through tough situations especially growth. If something comes along which shakes things up your pillars will hold your brand strong - even if a couple fail. Today we are going to look at those pillars in a little more detail. If you want a shortcut download our infographic. If you want a bit more have a listen to my pod.
Step 1. Define your value set.
What is the thing or things you want your company to stand for or be known for. Why are you doing this? A clear set of values and reasons for being help your audience believe in you. This also will help keep you motivated toward the goal when times are tough. These values help shape your company and your brand image.
Step 2. Identify your goals.
What are you trying to achieve? What does your product or service do differently? If you are clear on your objectives, it's much easier to share them with your audience and get them to champion your efforts. It's a bit like a car journey we focus on our goal, encounter obstacles along the way, we are often off course but we get there! Oh and there is a cost which we must fund usually before we set off.
Step 3. Determine your audience.
Who is going to buy your product or service, will the same people be using it as purchase it? Is there a third group who may love it and champion this but not necessarily use it? The more you know about who your product groups are the easier it is to connect with them. Sometimes the people who use the product aren't those who make the purchase. For example a Father's Day gift is rarely purchased by the man himself. This means that you should appeal to the purchaser as well as the recipient. The third group could be industry experts, press, social media influencers etc. They may not by or use your product in general but appealing to this group can help build your brand.
Step 4. Define your stories.
Knowing who you are, what you do, why you do it and who you do it for help shape your story. Good brands have several narratives they share with their audiences. The Genesis story - how they got started and why. The Hero story -where your product or service swoops in and saves the day. A cautionary tale - can also be valuable especially where your product solves a problem. For example, supposing you have a quick fix guttering product, telling the story of what happens when guttering is left unfixed can showcase your solution in a great way.
Step 5. Position you brand.
We live in a world where customer attention is difficult to attract. It's vital to reach the right people, in a way they will enjoy at a time when they want to engage with you. Most customer buying journeys started online and the customer can be as informed as your own sales team. Where does your customer base or audience hang out online? When might they be best interested in your offer? What in your stories, values and goals can you use to engage with them best?
I hope you've enjoyed this blog and find it useful in some small way. If you would like to go deeper we offer 1 to 1 coaching and one day workshops as well as full agency services if you prefer to get some help. You can email me directly on firstname.lastname@example.org
*Sharon Roberts 2019