First impressions are everything, and your brand stands as the gateway of first impressions for your business. Good branding not only increases the value of your company, but it also encapsulates everything you aim to communicate to your clients. There’s a common ground where businesses struggle with branding and that is remembering that as customers evolve over time; your branding can’t get left behind. We’ve rounded up some crucial mistakes to avoid when making branding decisions and building a brand strategy:
The word “aesthetic” gets thrown around so often in the social media world that its meaning and importance has become diluted. In short, an aesthetic is the guiding brand principles, so when choosing an aesthetic, it is essential that you align the look of it with the personality behind your business. Potential clients look to your online presence for insight regarding what your company does, how it does it, and most importantly, builds trust and credibility. If visitors to your social media channels have a hard time recognizing your branding, they won’t be able to identify with your company’s persona. Ways to keep your social media aesthetic in harmony include using the same logos across all channels, writing copy that assumes a similar voice, and choosing content that visually represents your brand accurately.
Failure to Differentiate
It’s easy to follow what works for someone else and especially easy if your company offers the same services as that another company, but mimicking style will never allow you to differentiate yourself from your competition. Remember that what works for one does not work for all (and rightfully so). If your company is identical to another, why would a potential client or customer choose to go with your services? They probably wouldn’t if the other company charges a competitive price. The best way to distinguish your brand is to know who your target market is, and appeal to them in a way that no other company does. Identify your unique value proposition and then build your branding to reflect that. It’s not about winning in every category, but its about finding what is right for your desired audience.
Ignoring the Signs of An Aging Brand
Society is always changing, growing, and evolving. Your audience changes along with that and so should your brand. Consider the household names across the globe like Coca-Cola, Apple, and Nike. What do these brands all have in common? They have been around for decades and that’s because they are consistently refreshing and reinventing their branding in order to attract new customers, while nurturing their existing audience. Growing and evolving doesn’t mean you have to start from scratch every quarter or year, but it means staying true to your brand’s mission and updating aspects of it to stay relevant to the times as the years progress.
Losing Brand Consistency
The overflow of content in an organization can get overwhelming. With different marketing elements such as ad campaigns, digital media content, and updates to social media platforms, it can be easy for a company to get lost in the mix when trying to maintain a consistent brand identity. Sometimes it may go unnoticed for a short while, but failing to stick to a consistent brand identity will eventually have a negative impact. Your brand may become incoherent, unreliable, and divided with no specific direction that it confuses not only clients, but employees as well. Intentionally defining your branding such as your mission statement, target audience and guiding principles will help keep this element of your branding in check.
The best way to prevent the aforementioned mistakes from surfacing within your branding strategy is to find a good cadence of checking in with your internal team to identify what is working and what is not working. When you are able to isolate a problem before it truly resonates among your audience, you will have mastered the art of keeping up with a branding strategy.
Story by: Mariana Duarte