What is branding? Branding at the end of the day is a feeling that is conveyed by the founder of the company to the employees and then from employees to the consumers. There is no such thing as a cheat sheet to branding success as branding is more like being curious all the time and it the right way will only hit you when the apple falls on your head. But what we can tell you is this that the key ingredient of creating a successful and long lasting branding impact is by being consistent.
Take an example of a famous brand like CocaCola, it has been able to succeed for generations because it has consistently changed to meet the market needs. The brand CocaCola is not famous because it sells black sugar water, it’s famous because what CocaCola stands for. It’s famous because what their founders wanted to convey about the brand and how they changed their message to appeal to a generation after another generation. Take an example of Nike, imagine if their founders thought that ‘Swoosh’ designed logo was redundant it would fade over the course time, then today we would not remember the brand Nike when we saw the 'Swoosh' symbol. They still have the same ‘Swoosh’ as their logo and their signature ‘Just Do It’ is still the same. The key ingredient of their success is the fact that they have been consistent in realigning their brand communication as per their consumers.
So as you can see there is no one recipe for successful branding, but however there few tips we can share with our entrepreneurs which will help them create a long lasting and impactful branding for their companies.
Find your story…
Once you realise what is the story you want to convey as the founder of your brand. Tell that story in a different and unique voice through different mediums. The Brand ‘Nike’ hasn’t changed it’s slogan ‘Just Do it’ as their strategy it has always changed the message to stay relevant. Many Nike Sub-brands have their own social media pages to convey different and targeted promotion.
Understand your consumers and then blast your message…
Always remember this if you don’t know what your potential consumers are thinking about you then it doesn't matter how expensive is the budget for your campaign, you will not connect with your consumers. A good brand always retains its old customers and finds the ideal customers. This is where the technology will help you, use the ‘big data’ to discover trends and consumer behaviour. During the ‘Great Depression,’ Pepsi branded itself as the cheaper and tastier version of CocaCola and later it realigned its communication in 50’s to attract African-American consumers.
Once you know how your potential consumers perceive your brand the next thing is to discover their preferred communcation channels. You as the founder need to decide, whether a TV Commercial or a YouTube Ad will work the best for the brand. It’s been estimated that since 2012, the use of mobile for search has doubled in 2014, make sure your branding is mobile friendly or you will miss out on some serious potential consumers.
Advocacy is more impactful than advertising…
Founders reflect the larger purpose when they advocate, not advertise. Advocacy is the conviction of your own belief. It’s important that the founder resonates these beliefs and skillfully articulates them consistency. But however before becoming an advocate, you must first build a strong personal brand. The loyalty and trust that a personal brand generates in the consumers mind cannot be made by just merely advertising about your brand.
The personal brand generates confidence in consumers and that works like a spell which becomes infectious at a rapid speed and gets passed on to your potential customers. For instance, It’s hard to forget the name like Richard Branson, the CEO of Virgin Airlines when your think of anything to do with aviation. There various examples of strong personal branding like Drew Houston Founder of Dropbox, Mark Zuckerberg Founder of Facebook, Elon Musk Founder of Tesla Motors and many more.
Although, there is no fixed formula for successful branding. But always remember to remain curious and aware of the change in the market. With consistent communication and genuineness in your message, you and your company’s image will remain current and stable for long years.