Whether you are conscious of it or not, you already have perceptions of the businesses and brands you come across every day. Take computers, for instance. You probably think of innovation for Apple, customization for Dell and economy for eMachines.
Companies in each industry do their best to influence customers? perceptions through branding. Branding involves everything from logos and marketing campaigns to employees? attitudes. Apple?s store layout, advertisements and product design, for example, are all designed to convince consumers that the company?s products are innovative.
In today?s competitive marketplace, it is vital that you create a brand for your product that communicates what you are all about. The following are a few items to consider while creating a brand identity:
When building a brand identity, research is your foundation. Take your research seriously, because if you build your brand on the wrong assumptions, it could fall apart.
Learn more about your customer base. Who are you targeting and what are their needs? What are they looking for from your company? After you find out exactly what your customers are expecting, look at your competitors to see what they are delivering. Your brand should be something unique. Finally, look at what you can offer your audience, and base your brand identity around one of your strengths.
A successful branding strategy is built directly on your research. Don?t try to create a brand that you can?t deliver or doesn?t speak to your customer?s needs. If you?re not the fastest in the industry, then don?t say that you are. If your customers don?t need the highest quality, then don?t build your brand around quality. Trust your research, and don?t be afraid to eliminate potential customers by building a brand that is too broad.
Also, you need to create a strategy that is unique and relevant. For example, a brand that says your product is ?excellent? doesn?t really say anything and won?t stand out in the marketplace. However, if your brand says that your product is ?built to last,? your customers know what to expect.
It has been said that your brand is the sum of all your parts, both the good and the bad. Therefore, a brand identity campaign is not just creating a cool logo or coming up with a catchy slogan. It?s making sure all your employees are on board with the values you are trying to communicate. It?s providing extra training for your customer service representatives or budgeting extra for customer perks.
Once you take the time to implement your brand identity, stick with it. Most successful corporations keep the same logo and slogan for decades. Don?t confuse your audience by changing your whole identity at the first sign of trouble. Trust your strategy, weather the storms, and establish an identity that will remain strong for years to come.