The American Marketing Association (AMA) defines a brand as a “name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers.
For that reason it makes sense to know that branding is not about getting your target market to choose you over the competition, but it is about getting your prospects to see you as the only one that provides a solution to their dilemma. It is about building a brand-presence!
A Good Branding Perspective…
- Delivers the message clearly
- Validates your credibility
- Emotionally engages your target prospects
- Inspires the buyer
- Solidifies customer loyalty
In knowing how to deliver these objectives you must first understand the components necessary for building a strong brand; and not just any brand, but a brand-presence that speaks your message with power. Each of the following components will help you with developing and maintaining brand consistency. Brand consistency will help you to retain customers and will remind others who you are and what you are all about.
Create Your Brand Message
Having a mission statement is pertinent to your brand’s success. A great business tagline makes your mission simple for your market to remember the main message of your mission statement. Therefore your mission statement and tagline are the core components that make your overall message SHINE! It is what your clients and potential clients will remember you by.
Visual Branding Components
Believe it or not the visual aspects of your brand are also important to your success. Think of the Golden Arches, that infamous Pepsi Blue; or what about Target’s Bull’s Eye Red. There is no mistaking the power of color visuals for these companies. Just like the colors are important so are other visual aspects. From the logo design to the colors you choose, to your website and marketing materials, your brand must be consistent and relevant to your message.
When you think about Nike, you think about that famous swoosh on the side and you know that Nike is intended to give you value and high performance. When it comes to companies like JC Penney’s who just changed their brand you get the sense of value at a great price. Even their new logo speaks volumes about their brand: SIMPLE!
Have you noticed how personable companies are becoming when it comes to marketing? There is a reason for that! We live in a society now where social media rules and consumer thoughts really matter because of global power through the airwaves.
Your message needs to be as authentic as your service or product. There is no other way to put it. Without a message that is real and filled with truth, you will not create the effect you desire for long term consumer relationships.
In order for your message to be authentic, you should KNOW the following elements:
- Know who you are
- Know what your product or service is about
- Know how your product can solve a problem
- Know your market
- Know your expected ROI (Return on Investment)
If you get a handle on these elements of an authentic message, you will find more success and a higher profit margin when it comes to sharing your message!
Branding isn’t a one shot deal, it’s an on-going juggling act of marketing, research and conversation. If you’re not tapping into those conversations with your audience, how do you know what their real impression of you is?