A brand is a direct representation of people’s perception of a company – its customer service, reputation, and the impact it has on society. When all of these elements work well together, the overall brand tends to flourish.
It is so important to not merely build and present an appealing brand but also one that stands for a worthy cause and upholds high values.
Professional brand communication is the ability to convey messages and knowledge in a language adapted to the recipient. It is crucial that brands that have a profound message be able to articulately convey and communicate it to their (target) audience, and not be misinterpreted.
But as the age-old idiom claims, it’s easier said than done. You need to know what language to use with whom – literally and figuratively – and how to interest them into buying or at least displaying an interest in your message.
Building the brand image should not present a facade effect and be attractive only outwardly or at first glance while behind the scenes it’s a nasty ploy to merely get into people’s pockets.
While the first impression still plays an important role when deciding whether someone will want to hear your story, what follows should match it and resonate with the audience’s expectations and needs, if not overdeliver.
The brand is the meaning of your existence, the values you want to pass on to others. Sometimes what your brand stands for can be more important to your audience than your product or service itself. And, you would be surprised at how, just because of your brand stance, people would still buy your product even if it’s not as efficient as those of your competitors. Studies show that an emotional connection is more important to your customer than customer satisfaction.
Molding an experience for your customer that is centered on a precise emotional connection is key to increasing customer value, maximizing return on investment as well as minimizing risk. By emotionally engaging customers, you set yourself ahead with regards to generating greater value and resonating with your audience on a level beyond your product offer.
Social media is possibly the best platform to leverage on in today’s fast-paced world. Connecting with audiences has never been easier with platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Tiktok. However, as easy as it is to engage is as easy as it can be to be ruined on social media by a single tweet pointing at a negative aspect that your brand is or used to participate in. It said that 71% of consumers who have had a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend the brand to their friends and family. This only emphasizes the importance of being relevant, transparent, and authentically engaging with your audience.
By the way, this is not to say be politically correct. Take the example of Colin Kaepernick and Nike. The controversy that the ad caused was intense but Nike chose to stand by him which ultimately resulted in a significant sales increase because they managed to connect with not only Colin but millions of other misrepresented minorities in different societies.
If you’re a brand manager, you are responsible for aligning the brand strategy with the company’s target market. It is a top priority for you to create a plan of action for how you want to present your brand in written, visual, and audio form. All other company departments need to be in sync and those common traits with your organisation can contribute to your branding elements. And, whilst we assume your experience, we couldn’t leave without reminders for crafting an ideal brand:
Pay attention to what your competitors are or aren’t doing. There may be loopholes that people are expecting a new or existing company to fill and satisfy their expectations.
One of the most difficult things in brand development is getting involved with your target audience. It’s important to envision what the perfect customer looks like and having identified him/her, using real data, focus your efforts on building for and around that customer.
Your brand persona is a key selling point to capitalize on. Define who your brand serves and what it stands for, and answer why branding is important for you as a company.
Make use of relevant social media for your organization and the target audience you want to communicate with. The use of ads, creative content, and influencer marketing can go a long way.