Stage 1 of our life-cycle in helping businesses achieve their sales revenue goals relates to creating awareness. We have discussed the importance of knowing the answer to three key questions before a brand can be created, namely:
- Who are your clients?
- What do your clients need?
- How do your products and services fulfil those needs?
Using knowledge based on their years of experience gained from holding various senior sales and marketing roles, Reach Revenue founders, John and Nik, help clients not only answer these questions succinctly but use the data collected to create a solid, engaging brand.
What is a brand?
You cannot create a brand if you are unsure of what a brand is. From an extremely young age, we know brands when we see them; studies show that children as young as three recognise certain brands such as McDonald’s, Disney, and My Little Pony. But it can be difficult to define the meaning of the term ‘brand’.
A brand is a perception of a product or service. One writer states:
“Put simply; your “brand” is what your prospect thinks of when he or she hears your brand name. It’s everything the public thinks it knows about your name brand offering—both factual (e.g. It comes in a robin’s-egg-blue box), and emotional (e.g. It’s romantic). Your brand name exists objectively; people can see it. It’s fixed. But your brand exists only in someone’s mind.”
Your brand creates trust in your clients – they know what to expect when purchasing your company’s product or service. For example, if you buy a pair of Levi jeans, you know how they will fit and trust they will be of a certain quality. And this is the case even if you have never owned a pair before.
So how is such a non-tangible item such as a brand created?
The secrets of a branding strategy
To create a brand, you need to identify how, what, where, when, and to whom you plan on communicating and delivering on your brand messages. Learn your prospective client’s needs, wants, habits, and where they hang out. Don’t just guess. Invest in data extraction tools that provide these answers.
You also need to understand what your company stands for. What are its values, mission, and reason for existing? What do you want others to say about your business?
Only when you fully understand what your business is and who your clients are can you successfully move from strategy to action.
Creating a brand
Creating a brand is not simply designing a pretty logo and writing up some values. Your brand needs to tell a story and, most importantly, create tension.
Think of your favourite movie or book. There is usually a hero or protagonist who wants something. But something or someone is preventing them from getting or achieving their desire. The tension created by wanting something and not being able to get it results in the protagonist making a change. This change leads them to reach their goal and satisfying their needs.
Your brand experience needs to motivate people towards change so they can fulfil their aspirations. The client’s ‘change’ is the action of trying your product or service for the first time or switching from a competitor to your company.
Let’s look at an example. Take fashion retailer Kate Spade. Its brand message is one of joy, colour, and femininity. Before opening its flagship store in Paris, it teamed with three influencers to create a ‘joy walk’ video entitled My Little Paris which highlighted top spots in the city with an emphasis on joy and fun. Everything about Kate Spade creates a tension of aspiration, designed to encourage women to shake off daily drudgery and find more youth and happiness. The first step to accessing a part of the brand image created is to buy a Kate Spade handbag or a dress.
Integrating your brand
Successful brands are integrated into every part of the business. Your brand should encompass the entire ethos of your business, and all employees should be behind it.
For example, your company website needs to reflect your brand, not only visually, but in its tone of voice. Discussions need to be had on the style of your communications; for example, is your organisation conservative or laid-back, friendly and welcoming or aloof and prestigious. And don’t dismiss the latter – no one would accuse Chanel of being approachable to the every-day-person, but everyone recognises what the brand stands for and delivers.
Creating a brand is not something that is achieved overnight. It can take years of work and investment. But the results gained from having a robust, recognisable brand are both lucrative and professionally rewarding.
Time to get creative……
Reach Revenue works with business owners, leaders and investors to develop high performing sales and marketing teams aligned to the strategic objectives of their business. To find out how we can help you, please call 0203 858 8030 or email firstname.lastname@example.org