Brand Strategy Explained: Defining and Building Your Brand
Welcome back to our series on business branding! Today, we're going to dive into the process of defining and building a brand strategy.
What is a brand strategy?
Well, we are going to cover the following key points to help you understand what it is, why it's important and how to go about developing one.
The importance of a brand strategy
How to define your brand's purpose, values, and personality
Tips for creating a unique brand voice and tone
Developing a brand positioning statement
Creating a brand architecture that supports your business goals
So, what exactly is a brand strategy?
Well, it's like a roadmap for building a successful and memorable brand. It includes everything from defining your brand's purpose and values to developing a unique brand voice and positioning statement and creating a strong brand identity.
But why is a brand strategy so important? Well, for starters, it provides a clear direction for your brand to follow and ensures that all of your branding efforts are aligned with your business goals. There are many other strategies you will have to develop as your business grows, for example Marketing strategy & Sales strategy. And most of those strategies will rely on an over all, strong brand strategy to be successful.
Now we have an idea of what a brand strategy is but, how do you go about defining your brand's purpose, values, and personality?
Start by asking yourself some key questions, such as:
What problem does your business solve?
What are your core values and beliefs?
What personality traits best describe your brand?
The key here is to define exactly, what you do, how you do it and who you do it for. This will help you draw a clear map of how best to connect with your desired audience and reveal a clear purpose for doing so. Go in to as much detail as possible.
For example, imagine you want to open up a restaurant. For the first question, ‘What problem does your business solve?’ Instead of saying “A need for local fine dining”. You could go a little deeper by defining any differentiating factors such as; area covered, space use (meetings/parties), time of day or cuisine. So it would then look something like this; “The need for fresh organic Italian Fine dining in Manchester open for breakfast, lunch & dinner”.
While you’re working through this process it is best to always question everything you do with a WHY? Why does this problem exist? Why are you trying to solve it? Why is your solution important? etc. This will ensure everything is properly thought through and serves a specific purpose within your business/brand.
When you are clear on your brand purpose, you can begin documenting your brand values & personality. Think of all the ways you want your brand to be perceived when people come in to contact with it. What does your brand stand for? And just as important what will your brand not stand for? Is you’re brand funny or serious. What personality traits does your brand have?
Remember, this is your brands personality and values and not necessarily your own.
Write a list of up to 10 values and 10 personality traits. Then choose the 5 most important ones of each list and document them. This will be the foundation of your brands values & personality which you can review and edit as your business grows.
Once you have a clear understanding of your brand's purpose and personality, it's time to start developing a unique brand voice and tone. This includes everything from the language you use in your marketing materials to the visuals that represent your brand.
Your unique brand voice and tone, is they way your brand should communicate with its audience on all levels. Here are a few points to research, to help you develop your brand voice and tone.
A portrait of your target audience and their voice.
Your brand's attitude to your audience (i.e., how formal or casual to be)
Your brand's core values.
Your mission statement.
Your message architecture.
Vocabulary to use.
Vocabulary to avoid.
To document your brands voice and tone, you can develop a brand messaging framework that includes guidelines for language, tone, style, and messaging goals. Use this framework to develop specific examples of how the brand's voice and tone should be reflected across various communication channels, such as social media, marketing materials, and customer service interactions.
Next, you'll want to develop a brand positioning statement. This is a brief statement that summarises your brand's unique selling proposition and sets it apart from your competitors.
A brand positioning statement is like a well-tailored suit: it makes you look good, shows off your best qualities, and tells the world what you stand for. Seriously though, a brand positioning statement is a crucial tool for any company looking to stand out in a crowded market. This process relies heavily on your competitive research and the development of your unique selling proposition. . It's essentially a concise summary of what your brand is all about, who your target audience is, and what sets you apart from your competitors. Take a look at Coca-Colas positioning statement as an example.
Coca-Cola Positioning Statement:
For individuals looking for high-quality beverages, Coca-Cola offers a wide range of the most refreshing options — each creates a positive experience for customers when they enjoy a Coca-Cola brand drink. Unlike other beverage options, Coca-Cola products inspire happiness and make a positive difference in customers' lives, and the brand is intensely focused on the needs of consumers and customers.
Whether you're launching a new product, revamping your marketing strategy, or just trying to gain a foothold in a new market, a strong brand positioning statement can help you communicate your message clearly and effectively.
Finally, it's important to create a brand architecture that supports your business goals. This includes everything from your logo and colour scheme to your website design and packaging. The key here is to ensure all of your brand assets are working together to move your business forward. Having consistent and cohesive brand architecture makes it easy for your ideal customers to recognise you where ever you may appear (online, in-store, Poster etc). You may also want to acquire a brand guide once you have all of your assets designed. By following the brand guidelines, you can ensure that your brand is consistently presented in the intended manner and that all assets are cohesive with one another.
Conclusion: A well-defined brand strategy is essential for building a successful and memorable brand. By defining your brand's purpose, values, and personality, creating a unique brand voice and tone, and developing a brand positioning statement, you can help your business stand out and build a loyal customer base.
So, what are you waiting for? Start building your brand today!
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