The most creative brand concept has the potential to fail if it is not backed up by a solid brand strategy. This must include the brands mission, vision and it must define the major levers that the brand has available to demonstrate value and loyalty with its audience. Brand Strategies go hand in hand with Brand Guidelines.
What is brand strategy?
Brand strategy is the goal a business sets itself for how they want people to feel about them. It should also include the plan of attack or road map that will be followed to achieve those objectives of connecting with target audiences on an emotional level.
A well-defined and executed brand strategy affects all aspects of a business and is directly connected to a businesses ‘simple truth’, consumer needs, emotions, and competitive environments. Brands must now compete with not only their competitors but other noise in general just to get their customer’s attention.
Brand strategies are not developed and implemented just so a business can have good looking marketing materials. The reason businesses and organisations spend time and money developing brand strategies is to have a plan in place to work towards achieving the business objectives they set for themselves. These goals could be anything from attracting great staff, better employee and customer engagement, increasing sales, awareness or profitability etc. Better branding is one of the ways to achieve these objectives.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF A WELL-DEFINED BRAND STRATEGY?
- It will lay the foundation for a healthy and differentiated brand.
- It will form an effective brief & sounding board for many aspects of the business (not just marketing).
- It will get all stakeholders on the same page to enable them to collaboratively focus on the end goal.
- It will objectify something that is otherwise subjective allowing everyone to make faster and better decisions for your brand.
- It will provide emotional based reasons (over and above the rational) for people to choose to support your business.
HOW DOES STRONG BRAND STRATEGY DELIVER RESULTS?
Emotions help us remember. It’s easier to draw on positive emotional associations with a brand than a list of key selling points. People who are emotionally attached to a brand are more likely to be loyal to it. Once you have made and emotional connection, there is less selling to do. You will save time and money when you don’t need to introduce yourself from scratch every single time you come in contact with your target audiences.