To drive the growth of your business in the long term, it’s crucial to think strategically about branding, and establish a unique and authentic brand.
Your brand is about how your products and service offerings are interpreted by the outside world and your people. It’s derived from who you are as a business, what you want to be, and who customers perceive you to be.
Branding is about perception, as well as being authentic and true to your brand essence. It’s about pinpointing the qualities that make your business unique, ensuring you can deliver on your promise to your target audience.
A strong, unique and consistent brand will differentiate your business from competitors, driving sustainable business growth that’s underpinned by customer loyalty.
To create a unique, authentic and profitable brand you need to:
1. Approach brand development from a business strategy perspective
First understand what’s happening in the environment around you — the competitive landscape, disruptive technology, innovation and so on. During this process, collect customer insights — customer feedback is invaluable to building a stronger brand. Once you have identified your clear business strategy and positioning, articulate what your brand needs to achieve to deliver to the strategy. Then determine your company’s brand values, traits and brand essence in a nutshell: the inspiring ideas that drive your business forward.
2. Tell a great story that creates an emotional connection
The most successful brands are consistent with the experience they provide to their customers and deliver on their promises time after time. To do this, it’s crucial to tell a great story. Traditionally, CEOs haven’t considered storytelling in their business strategies. Yet in today’s customer-centric business world, storytelling is key to giving your brand personality and substance — and it needs to happen from the top down.
3. Walk the talk — live and breathe your brand
With your brand story and business strategy in place, you need to walk the talk at every level of your organisation. Customers, employees and stakeholders want to connect with what makes your business distinct, authentic and reliable. Ensure that your company’s core values, story and goals are reflected across all communication platforms, from the company website, to social media promotion, to customer service interactions and team meetings.
Read the full article in The CEO Magazine.