With practically every business having at least some sort of presence online, it’s become easy for customers to get better acquainted with businesses without doing anything more than spending some time exploring their website or social media feeds. On one hand, this can be great for businesses. On the other, it opens the door for misconceptions and gaps in brand messaging that can tarnish a business’s overall perception.
This is why a branding strategy, which has always been important for businesses, has become even more crucial today. With it being so easy to put yourself out there and be seen online, lack of a brand consistency can leave your audience with mixed messages. If you want to see fruitful results from all your marketing efforts, brand consistency is your key to success.
The Importance of Brand Consistency in the Digital Age
When you’re strategizing and developing a marketing plan, your brand should serve as your guide through the entire process. A strong branding strategy should align with your core values and the promises you make to your audience. Branding should deliver the message and intent of your business in one effortless swoop.
When your brand isn’t consistent across all channels, you risk your audience taking it upon themselves to interpret your brand message. It’s never safe to make assumptions about these perceptions and the impact they can have on your bottom line.
Today’s consumer places different demands upon the businesses they interact with. They want to see authenticity and build trust. This is difficult for them to do when your brand message seems weak or isn’t consistent throughout each interaction. Think about some of the most successful businesses you interact with. How many of them leave you confused about their brand message and intent?
As a quick example, let’s compare the branding strategies of Whole Foods and Trader Joes. These companies serve a similar demographic but do so in entirely different ways.
Whole Foods is larger and leverages a simple visual branding strategy. Their classic green logo is easily identified anywhere. Green instills trust and establishes a sense of value. It’s also representative of nature – which is largely connected to the company’s image. Wander through a Whole Foods store and you’re going to see consistent brand messaging throughout.
Trader Joes, on the other hand, is a little more eclectic. They tend to offer goods that are a little harder to find but that also appeal to shoppers who want a healthier but budget minded selection. Their branding is more vibrant, almost quirky at times.
This isn’t a debate over who has a better branding strategy. The point is that both companies are consistent in their branding across the board, so customers can choose which retailer they want to engage with based on their needs or wants at the time. Without consistent branding, neither would be as successful as they are.
Keeping Your Brand and Message Consistent Throughout Your Marketing Strategy
It’s easy to talk about the importance of consistent branding for your business, but exponentially more difficult to establish and keep a consistent message. This is especially true for smaller businesses who are still in their youthful period of self-discovery. Any successful business person will tell you that adaptability is key and that the business you end up with might be different than your initial vision.
Still, it’s important to not be wishy washy in your branding strategy, no matter how young or mature your business is. You can change and adapt your branding strategy along the way, but you never want to leave your audience confused.
Creating and communicating brand consistency doesn’t have to be overly challenging. Here are 3 easy ways to stay consistent in your brand strategy.
Ask the Right Questions
Any good strategy starts off with asking the right questions. When considering how you’re going to build and communicate your brand, it’s important to identify your goals and purpose. These 5 questions will help you establish a firm foundation for your brand strategy.
- How can you make your brand relatable to your target audience?
- How does your brand strategy set you apart from the competition?
- Does your brand reflect the core values and intent of your business?
- Does your audience intuitively understand your branding without the need to explain it?
- Can your brand strategy translate smoothly across multiple channels?
Create an Internal Brand Culture
One of the most detrimental things you can do is build a visual brand strategy but not put in the work to create an internal culture around your brand. Your team, whether it’s 5 people or 500, needs to be onboard and act in a way that is aligned with your brand strategy.
For instance, if content creation or social media marketing is left in the hands of several different team members, how are you ensuring that their output aligns with your brand messaging?
Start by maintaining open communication about your brand values and make brand training a part of your onboarding process. Team members should also have access to tools that simplify brand consistency – such as content templates, mission statements, logos and acceptable stock images to use.
Build Content Around Your Brand Strategy
You’ve probably heard repeatedly that content is king in marketing. This may be true, but only if you keep your brand consistent throughout each piece of content you put out there.
Think about your values and the image you want to present to your target market when creating all types of content. Your audience is exposed to your brand across multiple channels. Make sure that all the content they encounter on these channels is consistent – both visually and with message intent.
Stop Second Guessing Yourself and Work with a Boston Branding Agency Today
Unless your areas of expertise are in marketing, understanding how to create a consistent brand image can be a challenge. We’re the Boston branding agency that can help. If you’re looking for a consistent brand digital strategy in Boston, contact GoingClear Interactive and let us help you create a consistent brand message you can start sharing with your audience today.