Identifiable brands are well-known all over the world. These large corporations’ brand images translate across continents and languages. They are immediately recognizable whether it’s Apple, Coca-Cola, Walmart, or Chick-fil-a. You can identify the company from their colors, their logos, or even sometimes just their products. Many people don’t understand the effort invested in the branding strategy behind these successful brands. Their logo didn’t just gain immediate traction overnight, there was a lot of hard work put into it, and we are going to cover what you need to do to create an effective branding strategy.
What is a Branding Strategy and Why is it Important?
A branding strategy is a long-term plan to achieve all the goals you want for your brand. Ultimately, initiating this brand strategy creates brand awareness for your customers. Your branding strategy should align with your company’s goals and missions, but it also needs to be geared towards your target audience. After all, they play a HUGE part in brand development.
A branding strategy is so important, especially at the beginning of your brand launch! Ultimately your branding strategy will determine how fast and how well your brand recognition will begin. In fact, 89% of marketers claim building brand awareness is their TOP goal, and how do you think they chase that? With a really effective branding strategy!
Before You Start Your Branding Strategy
Your branding strategy will start and end with one thing in mind: your target audience! As much as you need to focus on the values of your brand and making those evident, your target audience is who you are gearing your ENTIRE brand to. Your branding strategy should have your target audience at the center. To define your target audience try some of these ideas:
Try creating a buyer persona (we suggest using “Make My Persona” from Hubspot)
Think of the following demographics for your ideal customer:
Ethnicity and Religion
Consider purchase intentions and interests
Analyze any existing customers you may have
Another thing to consider before you start creating your branding strategy is figuring out your niche market. A niche market is a specific segment of a larger market that can help set you apart from your competition. Basically, consider it your specialization. What do you specialize in? This niche should be considered when planning out your branding strategy.
What Goes Into a Branding Strategy?
As we mentioned earlier, a ton of different elements go into an effective branding strategy. A strategy doesn’t just contain one thing – it contains many components that ultimately make up the whole strategy. All of your elements should be pointed toward your brand’s missions and values and most importantly, your target audience. Let’s talk about some elements that can go into a branding strategy:
As we’ve mentioned a few times in our previous blog posts, your color palette is one of the most important parts of your brand. Color psychology is a real thing and certain colors can cause your audience to feel specific kinds of emotions, and you want to make sure they are the right ones. Make sure your color scheme is aesthetically pleasing, but it also has to send the right feelings to your audience.
Logo design can be a long process but luckily our previous blog can give you all the details on that! Your logo should embody the values of your brand but also attract your potential customer's attention. Remember, your logo is ultimately the biggest thing your audience will remember. Make sure your logos can be memorable by the colors, font, image, and even the taglines!
Consistent Messaging Across All Platforms (Brand Tone)
Your brand tone is the mood or emotion you want your brand to convey across everything. Word choices and writing styles play a huge role in this. For example, if your social media has a fun writing style that makes people laugh, but your website has a serious and professional writing style, it may confuse your audience. Make sure you decide your tone in your branding strategy early on and use that throughout ALL platforms.
Mission Statement and Values
Your mission statement and values are the core beliefs of your brand. These CAN change, and it’s okay! People change over the years and so do their beliefs. As you continue your branding throughout the years, make sure all content represents your current beliefs. This is an important part of your branding strategy and it’s okay to reevaluate your branding strategy every few years.
Ultimately, your entire branding strategy is pointed towards your brand goals. Much like your brand values, goals can change over time as well. Consider creating long-term and short-term goals for your branding strategy. Everything we just talked about needs to have the intention of fulfilling these goals. For example, when choosing your brand tone, think about how that tone can affect the goals you have chosen. There are no goals too big or too small to consider!
Once you have finished your branding strategy, consider making a brand guideline. This guideline is the ULTIMATE package of what your brand should look like, say, and feel. Your brand guideline should be given to everyone involved in your company so everyone is on the same page. This creates a brand consistency in everything produced by your company. Some things to include in your brand guideline:
ALL logo variations
Stacked, Vertical, Taglines Included
What fonts do you want consistently used throughout content?
Include fonts for headings, subheadings, and body
Include RGB and HEX codes
Make sure to have the main color, an accent color, light color, dark color, and complementary color so you always have a scheme
Brand missions and values
Getting your branding strategy started and keeping It consistent can be a difficult task. We specialize in branding and making sure companies have consistent branding throughout everything they do. Reach out to us today to see how 30|90 marng can help kick-start your branding strategy today!