Brand strategy: the secret ingredient your marketing is missing
Imagine a business with an untouchable marketing foundation. It is well represented with a cohesive visual identity. Its copy creates a memorable impression. No customers confuse this business for any of its competitors. They know exactly what this business is about and what to expect. And while this business attracts a variety of clientele, they are respectful and recognise the value they will experience.
If this doesn’t sound like your wedding business, you may be missing out on brand strategy.
Brand strategy is for businesses ready to take charge of the impression, image and experience they offer.
But is every business a brand? And does every business need branding?
Just like we as individuals can never truly control what others think of us, a business can never completely define how customers view it. But they can influence perception provided they have a quality service or product of substance.
Branding is when a business takes charge of the impression they give. Most businesses do this by deciding on a business name, colour palette, and logo. The focus is mainly on visual brand assets and little else. Memorable and best-in-class businesses invest in brand strategy.
Brand strategy is an organized and methodical process that builds on a foundation. It’s an ongoing process that helps businesses craft their communications. When developing a brand many business owners find it useful to engage an independent outside viewpoint to offer clarity and objectivity.
Internal brand strategy begins with defining key brand values, such as why it operates beyond financial reasons, what it hopes to achieve and represent in the future, who it intends to serve, and how it manages to do this. A brand also needs characteristics or attributes. This helps customers connect with your brand and is essential in the digital space. As web3 develops it will only grow in importance.
This initial draft is refined with in-depth market research and competitor research. This informs brand positioning. A business can craft it’s brand based on its own values, what the market wants and responds to, and by differentiating against existing competitors.
Once we have identified a brand persona we can decide how to communicate through external brand assets. Brand assets are individual elements, such as your logo, fonts, and colour palettes.
Having a cohesive visual identity across all brand touchpoints is essential, but it’s not enough. In this digital age, customer experience includes evoking emotions. To master this brands need to focus on their messaging and communications. A hugely overlooked area of branding is brand tone of voice. How does your brand come across in marketing materials, on your website, in your social media captions?
Just as visual consistency is important, so too is having a consistent tone of voice. Imagine holding a conversation with someone who spoke interchangeably in an English, Scottish, and Welsh accent. Would you feel confused? Could you take your conversation seriously? In the same way, if brands fail to develop consistent tone of voice guidelines they will confuse their customers.
Tone of voice guidelines form part of your overall messaging framework. Once you have developed your brand persona and core values your messaging becomes much easier for you as a content creator, and more memorable to customers. If you outsource content creation you are more likely to get the results you want if you have a set of comprehensive brand guidelines that clearly define the impression you want to give.
Brand strategy is an in-depth process that results in informed and cohesive marketing. It attracts more clients who are drawn to the value you offer. When you have full brand strategy in place you cannot be copied. Competitors might try to imitate your visuals or social channels, but they will never fully replicate your brand. This makes you far more memorable in the sea of digital noise, which in turns generates more leads.
Brand strategy creates an untouchable marketing foundation and is an essential step for wedding businesses.
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