Every great brand has a personality. And like a real person, a brand builds relationships based on its characteristics and reputation. That is why defining the elements of your brand is essential. A brand is not simply a logo, a symbol or a tagline. A brand is a living entity—a collection of perceptions and beliefs that live in the hearts and minds of your customers. It’s the basis of communicating who you are.
But before you can work on building your brand, you must carefully analyze the possible barriers to its success. Certain market conditions can hinder your effectiveness, so it’s vital to identify and avoid those barriers early on. We urge you to consider the following in your own analysis.
Understanding what is available in the marketplace and potential consumer desire is essential to brand positioning. It is important to compile a list of your competitors, areas of benefit not currently claimed by them, any possible weak positions and ways in which your product shows superiority over the competition. This will put you at a distinct advantage in developing plans and creative concepts that garner results.
To be effective, a company’s position in the marketplace must be unique, desirable, believable, deliverable, integrated and consistent. Work to establish brand positioning based on these criteria in order to develop successful marketing plans.
In the world of marketing, it’s about defining and redefining the targets. You need to know who your customers are before you can craft and deliver a message that speaks directly to them. It’s vital to have the resources necessary to mine the most accurate data and identify the high-quality sources that provide the best-qualified leads.
Is there a demand for your product or service at this time? Are there seasonal or time-sensitive considerations? By identifying exactly when the planning and buying are happening, you’ll be in a better position to build marketing delivery at a time when people have an interest in your brand.
A brand cannot thrive simply by putting your logo everywhere. It’s about attitude, which starts with your senior leaders and staff. Your organization needs to understand your core brand values and live and breathe them every day. You need internal advocates that are your spokespeople, who demonstrate what your business stands for. Without this support from the ground up, a brand rarely succeeds.
Investing in getting your brand right is critical to laying the groundwork in any future marketing activity. You wouldn’t build a house without a foundation, and you shouldn’t build a marketing plan without solid branding in place. Most effective branding efforts can be costly, so unfortunately, it’s the step that is most often missed or, worse yet, cut from the strategic planning process. Finding the time and resources to get the right branding in place is the most important thing you can do.
Take control of your brand with the proper investigative and analytic approach, and be sure to stay current on market trends by subscribing to industry publications and newsletters. For more information about how you can crush your brand barriers, contact Lynn Kaniper at firstname.lastname@example.org.