6 Tips To Strengthen Your Business Brand Identity
Do you know just how important your brand identity is to business success?
Your company is both a business and a brand. You may already have a recipe for success when it comes to the commercial elements of your business, such as your product or service offering. But without a strong brand identity, you’re sure to fall flat.
Yep, building a brand is an essential ingredient to long term success. But all too often, businesses are understandably busy ticking off their long to-do list that building a brand identity takes a back seat. While you may feel like you’re saving time now, ignoring your brand could take its toll in the future.
What is a brand identity?
Your brand identity goes beyond your logo, style guide and colour palette. The all-encompassing assets communicate who your brand is, what you stand for, how your brand looks, feels, and speaks to customers.
With so much underpinning your brand identity, there’s no wonder it has the power to influence the entire customer experience alongside your reputation and credibility as a business. As such, creating a strong brand identity takes time and research. But when done effectively, you’ll reap the rewards.
Why do you need a strong brand identity?
The online world is a saturated and competitive place. For businesses to compete and thrive, it’s become more important to establish yourself by forming an emotional connection with your audience. A surefire way of doing this is through your marketing and messaging, which your brand should underpin.
While the impact may not be immediately apparent, problems will undoubtedly bubble to the surface in time if you choose to ignore your brand. This will be evident in your audience not being clear on who you are and what you do, resulting in potential shoppers quickly moving away from your business to a competitor.
As one of the most valuable assets in your business, your brand identity is worth investing in. A topic close to our hearts, in this article, we share our six top pointers to strengthen your business brand identity.
1) Get to know your audience
Research underpins everything and is the place to start if you want the best results. How will you create a brand identity that truly aligns with your business and resonates with your customers if you don’t know who you are and what your customers want?
Let’s start with your audience. Take a deep dive into your analytics to understand who your existing customers are and what resonates with them. This could include:
- Likes and dislikes
- Preferred products
- How they like to shop
- Popular social channels
2) Get to know your market
Once you understand your customers, it’s time to dive into your market with some competitive research. Look at how businesses are positioning themselves in your industry and where you stand in comparison to them. This could include visual elements alongside their messaging and personality so you have a better idea of how you can stand out.
We’d recommend speaking to those who matter most to your business too: your people. Your brand encompasses your employees, and as they work within the business, they’ll have their own thoughts and opinions on what’s important. Their voices can be valuable assets within this process, helping you understand what’s necessary to establish a strong brand identity.
3) Define your brand values
In order to create a strong brand identity, it’s important to establish why your brand exists. What do you stand for? What are your core values? These questions give your brand a narrative.
To help get you thinking along the right lines, consider:
- What does your brand believe in?
- How does your business solve problems for your audience?
- What value can your brand add to the lives of others?
- Why does your brand exist? Spoiler alert - it’s not just to make money!
- Where do you see your business going in the next year, five years, ten years?
- What inspires your brand and the people within it?
4) Create supporting assets
Once the research and consideration phase has taken place, it’s time to translate your learnings into defined visuals and supporting assets. These assets are a must-have for your internal business, allowing teams to be consistent and aligned in all that they do. It also gives them a ‘brand bible’ of sorts to refer back to any time they’re unsure. Common brand assets include:
- Colour palettes
- Logo and usage
- Photography style
- Graphic style
- Tone of voice
Remember, it’s your job to make it easy for customers to understand who you are and what you do. If they’re having to spend time sussing this out, your branding isn’t clear enough yet.
5) Promote your brand
No one knows your business better than you and your team. It’s important to be your own brand ambassador, promoting your identity and positively spreading the word.
Directly interacting with your audience and promoting your brand on a more personalised level will help your business stand out from the crowd. Not only this, it will also build a trustworthy image in the eyes of your customers so you can continue to build a loyal base of brand advocates.
6) Evolve, evolve, evolve
Your brand is a living, breathing thing. It’s important to recognise that your brand identity should evolve over time as your business changes. Once you have the foundations in place it becomes much easier to build from. After you’ve done the research and created the assets, take the time to analyse and refine it on a continuous basis.
This can be done in a number of ways but we believe one method is particularly important: speaking directly to your customers. Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback, find out what they want and use this insight to continue refining and strengthening your brand identity.
To sum it up…
Creating a brand identity isn’t a straightforward task, and it certainly won’t be done overnight. Nevertheless, it should be on your priority list if you want to build the foundations for ongoing success. Investing time into building a brand identity will allow you to evolve your offering next to your business to meet and satisfy your customers’ changing behaviours.