What is Brand Strategy?
You may be familiar with the concept but what does it really mean in practice? How does it apply to your business? Let’s start with the basics.
A brand, according to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, is “a public image, reputation, or identity conceived of as something to be marketed or promoted”. Strategy can be defined as actions taken to achieve the desired outcome.
So when we talk in terms of a brand strategy, we look at actions or a series of actions, that are intended to achieve desired outcomes for your brand. HubSpot describes brand strategy as “a plan that encompasses specific, long-term goals that can be achieved with the evolution of a successful brand — the combined components of your company’s character that make it identifiable.”
A brand strategy can be hard to define but overall it encompasses:
- What your brand stands for
- The promises your brand makes to its customers
- The personality your brand conveys through its communications & marketing
And while it includes things like your logo, colour palettes, a website, and a tagline, those are only the creative elements of your brand. But how you define your brand goes well beyond these things. It can be defined by how your staff engage with your customers, the approach you take to packaging, and the kind of support you offer with your services. A comprehensive brand strategy will influence all aspects of how your customers interact with your business.
Ok. So how do you come up with a Brand Strategy?
Developing a solid, achievable brand strategy can be one of the more challenging steps in a company’s overall marketing plan. But it may be one of the most important steps as it will have bearing on multiple aspects of your business.
When determining your brand strategy, consider these 5 tips:
1. Why Branding is important
A well-defined brand could be what sets you apart from your competitors. It’s the set of tangible and intangible assets that help promote recognition among your consumers. It helps to create focus and clarity around the way you approach your marketing and helps you connect with your customers emotionally.
2. Clearly define your brand
By clearly defining what your brand is, you create the foundation upon which all other components are built. Your brand definition becomes the lens through which you can evaluate all other aspects of your business & marketing – from what your retail shop looks like to the colours used on your website.
3. Determine your brand objectives
If a brand strategy is about a set of actions toward achieving long term goals, your brand objectives are the goals that need to be achieved. These objectives can be determined by answering questions like:
- What is it that you want your brand to do for your company
- What do you want others to know about your business, your products, or your services.
4. Determine your Target Audience
A target audience is a particular group of consumers, identified based on their likelihood to be interested in your product or service.
The key is knowing who your target market is. You can determine who your target audience is by asking questions like:
- How old are they?
- What is their income range?
- Where do they live?
- What other interests do they have?
- What’s important to them?
Understanding your customers – your target audience – is crucial in ensuring you craft a brand that will be appealing to them.
5. Establish the elements of your Brand Identity
While there are many facets to a brand, the visual elements are the ones that consumers will most often associate with you. These are the elements of your brand identity. They represent a set of characteristics that define the look and the feel of a brand across channels. They include your logo, your colour palette, your approach to images & photography, your slogan or tagline, and your use of typography. Be sure that these elements deliver on your objectives and achieve the effect you want to convey with your brand.
Want to learn more?
It’s difficult to overstate the potential benefits of having a solid, achievable brand strategy as part of your overall marketing efforts.
If you’d like to learn more about what a brand strategy can do for your own marketing efforts, reach out. We love chatting ideas and welcome the opportunity to explore content strategies to meet your business needs.