Brand strategies seem to change by the day. With social media avenues, content marketing, and the changing demographics and younger generations that are coming up, it’s easy to get lost when putting together a brand strategy. I think Tony Hsieh sums it up nicely with his to the point statement of “your culture is your brand.”
What seems to be an even bigger stumper is how we go about getting the culture of a business, the feeling, the brand image of a business out to the world. How can we get across who we are and what we stand for as a business?
Here are 5 simple and classic strategies that can help lead you to a successful brand strategy:
- Be yourself, be relatable
If your customers can’t relate they are going to miss that you are trying to make their life better. Keep it simple. It shouldn’t be a head scratcher to try to figure out what is being offered. Outside of that, people simply don’t have the time or don’t want to spend the time trying to figure it out. And above all else, be yourself. With the age of big data, information is available everywhere at a moments notice. The smoke and mirrors game is easily seen through.
- See your customer
Find out what your customers are doing, where they are interacting, where is the secret hiding spot that no one else knows about? Mix it up a bit. Using the exact same tactics for every release can become stale. Try new and innovative way to engage your audience and never take your clients for granted.
Instead of being reactive to what customers needs, be on the forefront. Inspire your audience. Imagine if Coca-Cola based their brand strategy around a brown fizzy drink. Instead they go after a lifestyle, a feeling, an experience. Coke is branded around the world as making the world a happier place. Their commercials and appearance reinforces summer, childhood, activity, and the environment without ever mentioning the drink.People like to be inspired. Inspired to go on that trip they’ve always wanted, to eat healthier, to go for that run, to make their business a success. By providing them the inspiration and knowledge that they need to achieve their goals, they will remember how they felt while interacting with your brand.
- Give back
The world is continually turning. People give and they take. It’s important to remember to continue the cycle and give back. From a simple thank you note, to a sustainability project, everyone appreciates the gestures that are made.
- Be genuine
Taking smoke and mirrors out of the equation allows you to really dig into what you are offering. When you establish those key benefits and features, tell it like it is! Don’t be shy. Know that you’ve done your research and you are solving a need, answering a question, giving your customer what they want. Your customers will appreciate your honest and up front approach. Remember: Marketing with Honesty is the NEW Best Policy!
“Your brand is the single most important investment you can make in your business”
– Steve Forbes
The most successful brands never fall victim to an identity crisis. Hershey’s is chocolate, Apple is technology. Steven Madden is shoes. Create a transparent dialogue to keep your brand innovating – people will be refreshed by honesty and build loyalty.
Your actionable this week: Take a look at your branding. Does it reflect who you are?