The word branding may call to mind decades-old, even centuries-old brands such as Levi’s, Wells Fargo and Starbucks. A lot of thought and planning goes into developing a brand. Don’t let that discourage you from creating your brand. If your company can avoid making these top 3 branding mistakes, then you’ll be in business.
1) Not Understanding the Power of Branding
Sure you know that you need a logo and that logo needs to be on every website, social media account and piece of collateral associated with your business. But that’s not enough. Branding, at its core, is about a single message that is memorable and motivational to your target market. The result, coupled with marketing, is a brand that inspires credibility and encourages members of the target market to follow and invest in your offering.
Don’t let this concept intimidate you. Consider it a creative brainstorming process in which you develop your company’s core message that encapsulates your offering and why it is the g0-to product or service. This message will serve as the brand’s foundation. All branding and marketing content should emanate from that message. Start with that and move onto your slogan, elevator pitch, logo, collateral, etc.
2) Over-promising in Your Brand Promise
Who hasn’t heard the age-old phrase of “under-promise and over-deliver”? The same applies to your branding. Try to focus on the one thing that your business does best and base your brand promise on delivering that “thing” but do it better than your customers expect. Promise what you can deliver, and only that, but then crank it up to the max in some way – make that deliverable top quality with something extra. If you can provide exceptional customer service on top of a good product/service, then make sure it’s done right with follow up calls or emails from a dedicated representative. If your company can produce the fastest then provide email updates with status to surprise your customers.
By over-delivering, you are providing unexpected value to your customers who in turn will spread their positive experience with others – the holy grail, word-of-mouth marketing! So be honest and specific about your brand promise then be ready to wow your customers.
3) Branding That is Too Scattered or Inconsistent
Your branding needs to be focused. If you’re trying to be all things to all people then you are just setting yourself, and your team, up for failure. Branding is all about focus. Determine the most compelling part of your offering and stick with that.
In addition, it can be difficult to ensure that the brand’s message comes across as intended in every circumstance when you have multiple employees involved in marketing or advertising. Consider creating a brand style guide for your team to refer to in order to keep branded messages, communications, materials, etc. consistent. The branding style guide should include a variety of instructions, such as the basics of how your logo should be used, brand colors, etc. You can also include copy-writing guidelines, which would outline the style of messaging in different circumstances. Include examples of proper use and misuse for each item in your style guide. To learn more about creating a brand style guide visit this helpful page at Web Designer Depot.