If someone asked you to define who you are as a brand, would you be able to summarize your mission and philosophy in a few sentences? Without focus, your company may flounder and never find its personality, making it less than memorable. The solution is figuring out how to build a brand strategy you can use as a roadmap.
Stackla surveyed 2,000 U.S., UK and Australia adults for their Consumer Content Report. They found around 57% of consumers feel under 50% of brands create authentic content. The problem may be that most brands don’t truly know who they are or have a plan to communicate their principles.
Figuring out how to build a brand strategy forces companies to think through some key factors impacting how authentic they look to customers.
What Does a Brand Strategy Look Like?
If you want to know how to build a brand strategy, you first have to know what one looks like. You should include your mission statement, customer service philosophy, communication preferences and the brand personality.
Your brand strategy likely resembles the company’s leadership style. If the founders are fun and easy going, the brand personality trends that way. If the business covers serious topics and the founders focus on getting things done, then the persona will be similar.
Steps for How to Build a Brand Strategy
Knowing you need one and figuring out how to build a brand strategy are two different things. Fortunately, there are some tried and true things that help you create a positive image for your brand. Stand out in the minds of your customers so they return to shop with you again and tell those they know about you.
1. Make It Personal
Studies show around 80% of customers prefer to buy from brands offering a personalized experience. Customers equate personalization with how much the brand cares about them as individuals.
Male part of your branding strategy a personal one. How can you segment your audience and speak to them about the solution you offer to their pain points? Use first names when possible and toggle onto data to figure out what customers browsed or bought previously.
2. Refine Your Mission Statement
Another idea for how to build a brand strategy is to hone in on your mission statement. Does your current one fully define who you are as a brand and how you want other people to see you? It’s okay if it is a bit different than when you started. Most companies morph and grow over the years.
Think about who you are and how you define that. If your unique value proposition (UVP) is that you offer the fastest service in the county, then include that in your statement and communicate it in all your branding efforts.
3. Research Your Target Client
How much do you know about your average customer? It’s difficult to come up with how to build a brand strategy if you don’t fully understand the audience you’re speaking to. Make a list of everything you know based on internal data.
Next, gather details from outside sources, such as consumer research firms, surveys of your customers and studying competitors. What seems to work best with your customers? Where do they hang out? Where did they see your ad and what made them want to click on it?
The more details you have, the better you can tailor your brand message to suit their preferences.
4. Review Your Logo and Tagline
Now that you know who you are as a brand and the message you want to send your audience, revisit your logo design and tagline. Do they match your mission statement and your UVP? Why should customers care about your logo or tagline? Do they communicate what you want them to?
At the same time, make sure your logo has the colors you most want associated with your brand. Choose colors your audience will respond to. Think about the emotions different hues evoke and try variations until you hit on the perfect combo.
5. Cater Your Content
According to HubSpot’s recent State of Marketing Report, 82% of marketing professionals use content marketing to drive traffic to their brand sites. One of the best ways to build your brand strategy is to focus on creating articles, infographics and videos centered around your core mission as a brand.
Think about the questions your customers have most frequently and how you might answer them while also showing the value you bring to the table.
6. Seek What’s Easier
Many businesses start off with processes and never change them. Or, they get in a rut with customer service, the products they carry and in other areas. If you want to build a viable brand that thrives, you need to keep seeking what is easier.
You’re probably heard the saying, “Don’t work harder, work smarter.” The advice applies to almost any type of business. Look for ways to automate things, such as by adding a chat bot to your website to answer frequently asked questions. Automate shipping, inventory and even some customer communications.
Seek what is easier so you can focus your time and attention on building a brand people talk about.
Track Results and Adjust Efforts
One final piece of advice on how to build a brand strategy for your business is to pay attention to what works. Put in tracking capabilities such as a unique landing page when you run a marketing campaign. Analyze results and make adjustments. Get rid of what doesn’t work and keep what does. Over time, your brand image will solidify and your fan base will grow.
About The Author
Eleanor Hecks is the Editor-in-Chief of Designerly Magazine, an online publication dedicated to providing in-depth content from the design and marketing industries. When she's not designing or writing code, you can find her re-reading the Harry Potter series, burning calories at a local Zumba class, or hanging out with her dogs, Bear and Lucy.