Essentially, brand strategy is a long-term plan that serves to develop and establish successful and well-known branding to achieve a company’s particular objectives. When put into action, it influences every business and is directly connected to how consumers feel about your product or service. It is also key to establishing your company’s identity and thus differentiating you from the competition. It is thought that by implementing a few ideas, along with a logo, you already have a brand strategy. However, it also includes your objectives, defining who your customers are, what your brand stands for, what the long-term vision of your business is, etc.
There are three types of brand strategy
You probably have your general branding plan, however you can redirect what you already have with any of these 3 types:
Corporate branding: This is based on people recognising your business as a reliable, quality and useful entity. To achieve this type of tactic, answer: What does my company stand for as a whole, how does the company portray itself to the world, what goal do I want to achieve with it, and so on.
Product strategy: If your company makes individual products or offers services separately and variably, these should also have their own branding. For example, soft drinks companies apply this type of technique as they offer the public different options, each having their own branding strategies.
Personal branding: In addition to a corporate or product brand, anyone can develop their own brand identity. This is based on building trust by demonstrating your knowledge of any particular subject or field, thus establishing your online or in-person reputation.
What should a brand strategy have?
Decades ago, branding was defined as a name, slogan, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of these elements, that distinguishes one company, product or service from another. Today, it is a more comprehensive and key topic for every business. It is not just about getting your target market to choose you over the competition. It is about getting your potential customers to see you as the only provider of a solution to their problem or need. At its core, since every brand strategy is about solving key consumer needs and reaching them:
- -Clear message delivery;
- -Brand credibility in the market segmentation;
- -Connect emotionally with potential customers;
- -Motivation to purchase;
- -Loyalty among users;
- -And understanding your customer.
As your consumers begin to identify with you, your brand lives in their minds and hearts, becoming emotionally connected.
Key questions to ask when creating any branding
By developing a strategic marketing plan, your brand serves as a guide to understanding the purpose of your key business objectives and allows you to align the plan with those objectives. Any brand strategy is not only valid during the pre-purchase time, the experience has to last to create customer loyalty. And to create that, you need to answer these three questions:
- -Did the product or service perform as expected?
- -Was the quality as good as offered or better?
- -Was the overall customer experience positive?
If you can get positive answers to these three questions, you will have created a loyal customer.
Beyond having loyal customers
The brand not only creates loyal customers, but also loyal employees. Good branding gives people something to believe in and rely on. It also helps employees understand the purpose of your organisation and feel as if they are part of something meaningful and not just part of a cog.
Here’s a basic checklist to evaluate your branding
How do you know if your brand is strong enough to give you the value? Start by asking yourself: -Does your brand relate to my target audience and will they instantly “get it” without much thought? -Does it share the uniqueness of what I offer and why it’s important? -Does it reflect the promise made to my target audience and does it have value to my internal audience? -Does it reflect the values I want to represent to my customers? Let these questions guide you in developing your brand strategy. If you are unsure of the answers, we recommend that you sit down with your team and come up with an effective branding tactic for your company.
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