You’ve likely heard all about the value of building a strong brand. Coca-Cola, for example, is one of the strongest brands in the world. Valuations of its brand range between $34 billion and $73 billion.
The huge range is because it’s difficult to put a definite price tag on the value of a brand. The Coca-Cola example proves that having a strong brand does add to your company’s worth.
One of the reasons a brand is so valuable is because it helps you stand out from your competitors. In today’s crowded marketplace, anything that makes you more visible is often good.
The first branding move most companies make is adopting a logo. There are more steps to take once you’ve done that. These ten branding ideas will help you continue working toward your company’s success.
1. Create a Mission Statement
Your logo is eye-catching, and it will help you stand out on social media or in search results. More important than the logo, however, is a mission.
Think about what you want your company to do. Are you delivering revolutionary products to delight your customers? Do you offer services to make people’s lives easier?
Your mission statement should also reflect your brand values. Together, the mission statement and the brand values help you craft an identity.
2. Create a Look Using Corporate Identity Tools
Your name and logo are great first steps toward your corporate identity. Your mission statement and brand values are also important.
There are other tools you can and should be using to strengthen your branding. Think about colors and typefaces whenever you send out a letter or place an ad.
Your website and other communications should also use these graphic design elements.
You should also think about things such as mascots and spokespeople. Who will your customers associate with your brand?
3. Identify Your Markets
Some of the best branding tips focus on your market. Who are you trying to appeal to?
If you know who you want to talk to, you can design the right campaign to connect with them. Certain demographics emphasize fun and adventure. Other groups of people want tradition and trustworthiness.
Identifying what your audience values will help you craft your brand identity. It can also help you tune out n the markets you aren’t focusing on. You can’t please everyone, so singling out the audiences that matter most is important.
4. Communicate and Connect with Your Audience
Once you’ve determined who you want to connect with, it’s time to take steps to do that.
There are many powerful tools that let you interact with your audiences. Use social media to find your audience and deliver content that delights them.
Remember that today’s consumer wants a relationship with the brands they work with. They want to know you value them. You can show them by doing outreach and communicating with them directly.
5. Try out Some Sneaky Branding Ideas
You’ve considered your social media and even your mission statement. What about other forms of branding?
There are many ways to reach your potential audience and strengthen your brand. Consider, for example, a referral program. Your customers act as brand ambassadors, telling others why they love your brand.
You can also consider giving away branded swag at trade shows or in pop-up shops. Think about useful items like pen or trinkets like buttons or pins with fun sayings. You can learn more about the power of these tools for your branding.
6. Define Your Voice
Most brand tips tend to focus on graphic design. Visual impact is important, but defining your brand’s voice is just as vital.
We’ve already talked about the importance of connecting with your target audience. Your brand voice guides this communication.
If you’re blogging or writing ads, your voice should reflect your brand values. If you’re trying to put forward a professional image, referencing the latest memes is a mismatch.
By contrast, it’s a great tactic for a brand that wants to seem irreverent and fun.
7. Make Sure Your Brand is Consistent
The idea that your brand’s voice needs to match your values speaks to a larger issue in branding. Brands must be consistent.
You’ll sometimes hear this branding tip stated in other ways. Some people will tell you to be your brand and to be it all the time. What they mean is you need consistency.
Developing a brand style guide will help. Review it often, especially when you need to make brand decisions.
8. Don’t be Afraid of Emotion
One of the reasons for the success of brands is because they stir emotions in people.
Coca-Cola is the classic example here. This brand has a long history of connecting to good feelings or good emotions. Some of their past ad campaign slogans include “open happiness” and “taste the feeling.”
Other brands inspire different feelings. For example, some brands inspire trust and feelings of safety.
An emotional appeal lets your customers connect with your brand on a human level. Tap into the emotions that drive you in your mission to design an emotional appeal for your brand.
9. You Must Provide Value
You can have great brand ideas, but your company won’t get very far without this key ingredient. Your brand has to offer something of value.
You may think this is your product or service. Looking at Coca-Cola again, we see brands offer emotional value to their customers too.
Think about what you offer, beyond your services and products. Maybe your company offers a new way of thinking or doing something. Maybe your customers receive a sense of accomplishment when they work with you.
This provides value, which is what will make people choose your brand over others.
10. Prepare to Analyze and Measure
As we noted at the outset, it’s difficult to attach a concrete dollar value to any given brand. You still need to be prepared to analyze and measure the success of your branding efforts.
This might take the form of surveys. Ask people what they think of your brand. Does the public perception match the image you want to create?
You should always be ready to revise your branding strategy too. Good brands stay up to date. While consistency is key, it’s also important to evolve.
Build Your Business with Great Advice
These ten branding ideas will help you go beyond the logo and create a truly strong brand identity.
If you’re looking for more great advice about building your business, check out the blog. We have plenty of ideas about everything from productivity to marketing.