To understand the principles I think it is worth defining what really is Brand Strategy? So, Brand Strategy is no more than a plan that entails long-term objectives that can be achieved with the evolution of a successful brand. A highly focused and well-defined strategy often brings clarity to the business stakeholders when it comes to taking a decision on which areas they should be focusing when growth becomes part of the plan; it does affect all aspects of a business model and is intrinsically connected to their target audience needs, emotions and competitive environments.
It is also very important to keep in mind that a Brand is not a product; it is often seen by consumers problem-solvers and the perception of how good are the services that brands provide to their daily activities.
In essence, it is to build a foundation of communication that builds authentic relationships and bridges the gap between you and your audience.
By defining the brand strategy it allows you to utilise marketing, advertising, public relations and social media to consistently and accurately reinforce your character.
It starts with your authenticity, the core purpose, vision, mission, attributes, values and character. Define what your brand is all about and what sort of problems are you trying to tackle. Focus on what you do best and then communicate your inimitable strengths through consistency.
Your brand is your business model so basically, everything that you offer is an extension of your brand promise and the consistency that it portrays every day. This leads us to the third principle.
Consistency in your message and consistency in your daily activities is the key to differentiate. A long time ago Huma cracked the code of pattern recognition... make it a good habit! By narrowing it down the brand core attributes to a few words you already leveraged out your messaging.
Everyone in your company can tell you what they see, think and feel about your brand. Everyone experiences life differently so it is very important to keep your staff opinions in mind because they can often give you an eye-opening perception of your brand. Empower them because as soon they become ‘believers’ that faith and passion will be put across in their actions. That’s the story you should bring to the customers as well, drive impact beyond just the walls of marketing.
A brand is a desirable idea manifested in products, services, people, places and experiences. Sell people something that satisfies not only their physical needs but their emotional needs and their need to identify themselves to your brand.
Award those that love your brand to help drive the message, facility activities so they can be part of the process. If your brand advocate doesn’t tell you what you should or should not be doing, it’s time to evaluate your brand promise. It’s a lifestyle and a culture.
A well-managed brand is always making adjustments. Branding is a process, not a race, not an event so expect to constantly tweak your message and refresh your image. Successful brands don’t cling to the old ways just because they worked in the past; instead, they try to re-invent themselves by being flexible which frees them to be more savvy and creative.
Convey the brand message on the most appropriate media platform with specific campaign objectives. Consumers are bombarded by advertisements every day, they’re also actively blocking out the great majority of them. Invest your branding efforts on the right platform that communicates to the right channels.
Community is a powerful and effective platform on which to engage customers and create loyalty towards the brand. In an active community, members feel a need to connect with each other in the context of the brand’s consumption. We all want to be an insider of something, it excites us to tell people which community we are part of and what knowledge we possess. This will also enable you to get their honest feedback when launching a new service or product that might be relevant for this community.
Be aware of your environment, your staff and your communities as often they will be your first reach in getting feedback. Adjust and pivot when the market or target audience needs so that you still become relevant and flexible. Show some love, be kind and empathetic so that you get the loyalty and admiration from those who help you build your brand.