Branding... it is so much more than just having a logo and a tagline. Over the next eight weeks we are going to be breaking down all of the components needed for a full scope brand strategy.
what is a brand strategy?
In essence, it’s your strategy for how you (and your team) will build, shape, and share your brand. It’s the articulation of what your brand is and aspires to be, the purpose it serves, and how you communicate it to the world. Tl;dr? It’s a documented plan for brand success.
why do you need a brand strategy?
A brand strategy is the plan for how you will connect your company to the people it serves—those who work for it and those who support it through their patronage. This is an important series of relationships, so it’s important to be intentional.
The customer-brand dynamic has significantly changed over the last century—even the last decade. It’s evolved from a transactional relationship based on product features to an emotional relationship based on shared beliefs and principles. According to the 2017 Cone Communications CSR Study, 87% of consumers stated they would purchase a product based on brand values.
For brands to succeed, they must skillfully attract and build genuine relationships with people in an authentic and transparent way. But if you, as a brand, don’t know who you are or how to communicate it, you can’t form those relationships. That’s why having a brand strategy matters.
It’s not just about your customer relationship either. Having a brand strategy also helps you build a healthier business. A 2016 Imperative/LinkedIn study found that 85% of companies with a clearly articulated and understood purpose experienced positive growth, while 42% of companies that didn’t experienced a drop in revenue.
Beyond the bottom line, a brand strategy also helps you cultivate a happier company culture and stronger relationships with your employees. According to the Imperative/LinkedIn study, 73% of purpose-driven employees are satisfied with their job. When you work for a company with a well-articulated brand strategy and a deep understanding of its values and vision, it is easier and more enjoyable to work toward achieving those goals.
(Unfortunately, according to the 2017 State of Branding Report, only 51% of employees were familiar with their company’s brand strategy.)
how to create a brand strategy
Although having a documented brand strategy is so important and so beneficial, not every brand has one.
In some ways, it’s understandable. If you’ve done any sort of Googling on brand strategy, you’ll find a million different listicles, diagrams, and thought pieces about what you should and shouldn’t include in a brand strategy.
Frankly, most of them are confusing, redundant, or unnecessarily complicated. When time, money, and energy are in short supply, it’s easy to want to backburner a brand strategy. But that only continues the chaos.
If you’re ready to create a brand strategy but don’t know where to start, you’re in the right place. To streamline and consolidate the brand strategy process—which can already feel overwhelming—we’ve created a simplified framework and step-by-step process to walk you through creating your brand strategy, and we’ve included our best tips, examples, and exercises to make the process a little easier.
Now you know what a brand strategy is, we can get to work on building a rock solid strategy for your brand.
Next week we will be going through the key elements of a brand strategy and starting phase one.... Discovery.
Want to discuss your brand strategy with our talented team? get in touch with us today and see how Visinatus can help you.