WillBy WillIn Articles19 Minutes
Brand_Identity

Create a brand that your audience identifies with

Gone are the days of businesses just hanging a shingle out the front of the store saying “Open for business”. It’s simply not enough to just open a business. If you want to engage your audience or your Tribe you will need to form an emotional connection and establish a trusted relationship with your target audience.

Consumers these days feel more comfortable giving their hard earned money to a brand that they identify with. If you genuinly care about your product and you genuenly care about your consumers you should make efforts for these statements to shine through in your marketing. Ask yourself a couple of questions.

  • Are you excited to start work in the morning ?
  • Are you giving more to your consumers than they ask for?

If the answers are no then maybe it’s time to have a think about how you can re egnite the spark you felt when you first launched your business.

If the answers are yes then great, now lets find a way to communicate your passion to your audience.

In this video Fabian talks about businesses that have successfuly engaged with their target audience on an emotional level and turned this engagement into profits.

Concept of strategy

The concept of brand strategy is not so complex or difficult to undertstand.

Doing business can be tough. Unless you were fortunate enough to stumble across or create a business that easily turns a product or service into revenue each day you will no doubt agree that doing business in the 21st century is getting harder and harder. The population is exploding which should mean that more and more people are consuming. But the other side of that coin is that more and more competitors are competing for the hard earned dollars of your audience.

Brand-strategy

Then there’s the issue of copy cat businesses business model. Maybe you were the first in your marketplace to offer a product or service. Your proud of this product, no one else offers it to your audience, you’re making good money. Then one day you turn up to your market stall and there is a copy cat shop right next to your selling the same product for 1$ less per item than you. Suddenly all your loyal customers are looking at the shop next door because they can save $1.

Here's a video where marketing authority Seth Godin talks about being an artist and offering a unique product to your marketplace.

Brand_Strategy_Examples

Strategy examples

Let’s talk about strategy examples.

First we need to create a hypothetical business for our discussion here. How about an ice cream shop selling ice creams in a local shopping strip. This ice cream shop has no intentions of growing into multiple locations at this stage but instead would be happy making a good living from one shop location in a small neighbourhood.

Now let’s create a basic business strategy framework for our ice cream shop.

First of all we need to gain some basic knowledge of the business and it’s target audience. We need to ask 3 questions first of all.

  1. Identifying who you are as a brand?
  2. Identifying who your ideal client is?
  3. Identifying the target goals?

Now that we have this information we can move on to our strategy. And for the purpose of this article let’s talk about a simplified 12 month business strategy. Note, In actual implementation we would go much deeper into detail.

First things first. Let’s sit down and discuss what your business is. What are your dreams for your ice cream shop? What are you goals? How did the business start? What was the inspiration for the business? What is the persona of the business? Is it a fun and light-hearted ice cream shop? Is there music playing all the time? Do you make your ice cream from unique products? Do you have daily special flavors etc etc.

Let’s really try to understand your business. Typically we would spend an entire day or 2 half days with the business owner conducting this analysis.

Now let’s try to understand your ideal customer. What gender are they? What age? What are their likes and dislikes? What social media channels do they spend most of their on screen time on? What is the average wage of your target audience/ideal customer?

Now lets populate the strategy. Because we have taken the time to sit down and do an analysis we are fueled with the information we need to create a brand strategy.

So we are going to need a few things.

  1. An online project board
  2. A website
  3. A logo
  4. A marketing plan

Again this is an abridged version of our brand strategy package. 
Let’s elaborate on each one of the 4 points above.

The project board

A digital project board like this one is critical in the success of your business. Think of it as having a digital foreman cracking the whip on you every week via email reminders. We use these boards with many of our client projects and they are a great way to stay organized and stay on track.

The website

When building a website you need to be aware or many things. What functions will your website need to perform? Have you designed a funnel system for your website to capture leads and conver them into sales? Are you knowledgeable enough and motivated enough to add new content to your website on a regular basis or should you outsource this service?

The logo

Don’t skimp on a logo. Logo design generally falls into 2 categories.

  1. You pay a low fee for a selection of logos to choose from.
  2. You pay a higher fee for an ageny to study your brand and come up with a bespoke logo that is used in conjunction with branding to identify your brand and its core message to the marketplace.

The marketing plan

An example marketing plan could be content marketing drawing prospects into your funnel system. Basically you put out constant, value-orientated content targeted towards your ideal prospect. Talk about what people need to know about ice cream. Offer ice cream storage tips etc. Become know as the authority in your field by constantly delivering content marketing about ice cream. The content would have a hook prompting prospects to visit your website, landing page or similar. Then you nuture the prospect into a sale.

Here's a video about brand strategy and a case where it should have been implemented.

When should you launch a brand strategy?

You should launch a brand strategy when taking on a new challenge. What does this mean? It means for example you are about to start the new financial year, the new calendar year or perhaps you are starting a new business alltogether. Starting a new business requires a particulary detailed brand strategy as you will have a lot more work to do.

Concept of Business_Strategy
Features_Of_Strategy

Features of Strategy

Tasks typically associated with starting a new business are ;

  • Creating a website.
  • Starting an SEO package.
  • Creating a logo.
  • Setting up social profiles.
  • Designing a marketing plan.
  • Preparing and schedluing the marketing content.

Design vs strategy

Often business owners, entrepreneurs, creatives become confused when starting a new business or when taking on a new challenge like the turn of the year. They become obsessed with the content and the design rather than following a well thought out road map that is designed to best ensure success for the business.

The strategy of your business will dictate the content needed. The strategy plan will be the roadmap that dictates  the path to follow. The path is then populated with the design components like weekly and monthly tasks.

Think of it this way. There’s no point designing a logo, designing a website. Then later down the line creating a strategy, only to find that the strategy determines that your logo is inappropriate for your brand and the website does not address the core functions outlined in the strategy.

Design_Vs_Strategy