WHAT IS BRAND STRATEGY?
Brand strategy is the framework that defines the core qualities of your business, and how those qualities are expressed through branding. It covers things like:
- how you want your customers to feel about your business
- what your business stands for
- the kind of personality your business should convey
A Brand strategy is built by digging deep into a lot of questions about why your business exists, and what you hope to achieve as a result. It’s only by having clearly defined answers to those questions that things like a visual brand identity (logos etc.) can be created in a way that actually helps and supports your business. It has a lot to do with finding out what matters the most to you and why you want others to buy into it.
QUESTIONS TO ANSWER BEFORE BUILDING A BRAND STRATEGY.
1. WHAT IS THE END GOAL OF YOUR BRAND?
Define what the goal of your brand strategy is. It might be to improve the relationships between you and your customers. Maybe you want to establish a more professional presence. Your goal might be to position your brand as the authority in your industry, or to increase your online visibility, or reach a new demographic. Your strategy depends on your expected outcome. What is your end goal?
2. WHAT CORE VALUES DRIVE YOUR BRAND?
With your goal in mind, the rest of your brand strategy should be focused on how to make it happen. There are several ways to help you achieve your goal but you need that which communicates how you want to be perceived. Defining your core values is necessary to achieve this. Your core values are what defines you as a person. It will give your business a moral compass. Having well-defined values means that you can measure whether your tactics and strategy fit with what you believe as a business.
3. WHO ARE YOUR IDEAL CLIENTS?
You need to know who you are doing all this branding for right? Think about your ideal customer and all that relates to him/her. The more targeted you can be, the easier it is to brand and market your business. Don’t just look at things like age and sex,or income either! Get deep into what your ideal customer wants. What would bring them into contact with your business? How can you solve their pain points? What would make them happy?
4. HOW DO YOU WANT YOUR CLIENTS TO FEEL ABOUT YOUR BRAND?
Think about the impression you want your brand to have on your customers. What would they say if they mentioned your brand to a friend? What is their reaction going to be after using your business?
5. WHO ARE YOUR COMPETITORS?
I am an advocate of collaboration and not competition but that doesn’t mean there are no competitors. Do some research and find out who your direct competitors are. Make notes about who they appeal to, what their branding and marketing style is, and how they differentiate themselves from one another.
6. HOW DIFFERENT ARE YOU FROM YOUR COMPETITION?
You need to find how to stand out and be unique.
You don’t need some extraordinarily innovative new way to do business in order to be unique. All you need is something straight-forward and true to your business that you can highlight in your branding. It could be one of your core values, or your niche, something you do better than any other business, or a promise you can make to your customers.
7. WHAT ARE THE PERSONALITY TRAITS THAT DESCRIBE YOUR BRAND?
Your brand has a voice that is unique to you alone. It has a particular way of speaking, a unique way of building relationships with customers. This makes your business relatable. Pick adjectives and sound that best describe your brand.
You might think building a brand is all about having a nice logo with pretty colours and professional photos. Unless you create the strategically, they might not help your business to grow, attract more ideal customers, and make you profit. Maybe you’re finding it hard to justify paying for, or spending time on, something that is intangible. With a logo you can see where your time and money are going, right? But just like how your brand is an intangible thing that has a huge impact on your business, brand strategy is super important and essential, too.
Need help with laying the foundation for your brand strategy?