In a highly competitive world, only the best can be the best in the minds of consumers. That’s why it’s imperative to focus on how shoppers perceive your brand. Considering retail is an industry with many direct and indirect competitors, brands need to find their voice and learn to share it with customers.
In this article, we’ll focus on the elements that create a strong brand. We’ll also provide tips on how to use these elements to create a branding strategy to help your customers remember your brand.
What is a brand strategy?
A brand strategy is a holistic approach that outlines how a business will present itself to its target audience. The purpose of branding is to help a business be memorable in the eyes of buyers. Additionally, a great brand strategy can increase brand loyalty, customer satisfaction, and sales. However, the main purpose of branding is to create a good impression and connection between the brand and consumers.
Why is developing a brand strategy important?
“You can have the best product in the world, but what’s the point if no one knows? » Phil Knight, President of Nike.
No one will remember your brand or your product without a strong branding strategy until the product is branded. A branding strategy helps you connect with the right customers and build strong relationships. When customers see your brand as a person, you’re doing it right.
Statistics also show the importance of developing a strong brand strategy. 59% of shoppers prefer to buy from a brand they trust, and 21% say they buy a new product because it’s from a brand they love.
A brand is not just a logo or a name. While these elements are important and are the first elements that customers remember, there are a few things that any branding strategy should focus on.
Elements of a successful brand strategy
It’s important to understand and put these elements together before you start creating a branding strategy.
As the name suggests, the brand core is the most important part of any brand strategy. The core of the brand is the core belief, purpose, values of the brand, and the most important thing is the brand story. To understand the core of your brand, you must be able to answer the following questions:
- Why is there this brand?
- What does this brand value most?
- What does this brand stand for?
- How is this brand different?
It is the element that builds the connection with the customer. More and more buyers expect brands to be driven by strong values and take action to make the world a better place. Customers are willing to “give back” to the brand for this. 89% of buyers remain loyal to brands with shared values.
A brand story is a narrative a brand uses to share its core values, principles and purpose. This is when storytelling comes into play and engages your buyers.
As we mentioned before, customers want to connect with brands, which is not possible without a brand story.
One of the best brand stories is Procter & Gamble. They market their brand as “Mom’s Proud Sponsor”. Most of their advertising and promotional campaigns contain this slogan that successfully evokes emotion. After all, who doesn’t love a brand that supports mothers?
This is the essence of the brand, the brand voice and the personality. Brand voice consists of the message and tone that a brand uses to communicate its message across all marketing channels.
Depending on the type of products you sell, your target audience, and your brand core, you may find a brand voice that works for you. There are several brands that can identify themselves by sound as they manage to find one that evokes emotion.
Brand “personality” is the emotion your brand evokes in people’s minds. How do customers perceive your brand? Is your brand a fun and reliable old friend, or is it an eco-organic girl? Of course, every buyer will have a different opinion of your brand as it depends on their personal experiences and emotions.
Brand personality combines all of the above elements. That’s why it’s important to find them and find ways to share them with buyers.
Other important elements that are part of a brand message include the value proposition, tone and message pillars.
brand visual identity
Visual identity is critical for brands, especially for large retailers. The brand’s visual identity can be traced back to the smallest details, such as the font used on a bottle of soda the brand sells.
Brand color choice
Most brands use some elements and colors because of the symbolism behind them. For example, red represents passion or anger. However, when used on labels or packaging, the color immediately grabs attention. Think about how many brands use red or incorporate the color into their visual identity. Coca-Cola, Red Bull and Nescafé are just a few of the FMGC products that include this color in their logos and designs.
Another common color used in retail is yellow. Besides being a symbol of optimism and happiness, yellow (and orange) is a color that can increase hunger. That’s why many fast food brands like McDonald’s and Subway use yellow.
As green retail and sustainability are hot topics, many brands have started incorporating green into their packaging. Brands that want to market their products as organic, eco-friendly or healthy options use green. Shoppers looking for healthier or dietary options will look for products with green labels or packaging.
Let customers know about your brand
Let your buyers discover the “core” of your brand. You need to find a brand voice that matches your values and share a brand story that integrates your visual identity. By combining all these elements, your brand will become the first choice for buyers.
Inner Vid Credit: provided by the author; thanks!
Featured Image Credits: Eva Bronzini; Pixel; Thanks!