The idea of a brand strategy is often misunderstood by business owners.
People might assume that it’s only for big companies with lots of resources, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. A brand strategy can help businesses of any size create a clear and cohesive brand experience, improve their marketing efforts and generate more revenue.
In fact a brand strategy is essential for small businesses who have limited resources in order to make the most impact with the least input.
This blog post will discuss what a brand strategy is, exactly what a brand strategist does, how to develop a brand strategy for your business, and why you need one now more than ever!
What is a brand strategy?
A brand strategy is a plan for how you want your company to be seen by the world. It’s a plan for how you want your company to be perceived. It helps you to think about how your company will be positioned in the market, what you stand for and what makes you different.
A brand strategy is the way that we communicate what our business stands behind and believes in, as well as who it wants its customers or clients (or both) to become over time with their products/services being used by them on an ongoing basis.”-Andrew Davis
In essence, a Brand strategy should clearly articulate What you do, how you do it, why you do it, who you do it for and what you want them to think, feel and do when it comes to your business
Your brand strategy is the foundation for your brand. A brand strategy is the blueprint for how you want to be seen in relation to what you stand for, what you believe, how you act and how you show up in the world as your business.
A brand strategy is a document that outlines the company’s goals, objectives and values. It also includes how these will be communicated to customers or clients (or both).
A strong Brand Strategy can help you differentiate yourself from your competitors in an increasingly crowded marketplace.”-Andrew Davis
Why do i need a Brand Strategy
A brand strategy is a compass that will help guide all of your decisions, from what brand colours to pick to website design decisions to marketing campaigns and product/service development.
Without a brand strategy, you’ll lack clarity and could easily get pulled off course. With a clear brand strategy, it’s easy to see which decisions make sense for the business and which don’t.
It’s important because it helps you stay focused on what your goals are and who you’re trying to reach.
What’s included in a Brand Strategy?
There’s no set framework for what should be included in a Brand Strategy so each company’s brand strategy document might look different
- A brand statement that sets out who you are and what you do
- vision & mission
- brand values
- Your ‘why’
- Competitor analysis
- Ideal customer avatars/ brand heroes/ brand muse
- Your unique selling proposition
- Brand Avatar or brand personality
- Brand Essence / Brand Pillars
- Brand Voice
- Key messages
- Marketing platforms
- Brand vibe
- Visual inspiration
- Colour palette
What is a Brand Strategist and what do they do?
A brand strategist is someone who helps a company develop and maintain its brand in line with its wide business goals and vision.
A brand strategist could help you grow your business and increase its profitability by developing a clear, cohesive strategy for all the touch points with customers.
The process of designing or updating an organisation’s visual identity is called Branding ‒ this can include logos/ typefaces etc., but also colours schemes to interior design choices such as fonts on signs
Brand design historically, was left in the hands of graphic designers who, whilst understanding design rules and psychology may not have the holistic view of the business and its wider and deeper goals.
Graphic designers tend to create beautiful brands but not always ones that stand out for the right reasons.
Brand strategists bridge the gap between the business and design, helping to create a cohesive brand experience for customers and a brand that has substance.
A brand strategist will help you find your unique differentiator and then help you communicate it to your audience. They help you stay focused on what your goals are and help create clarity around what it is that you do and what makes you different.
A brand strategist looks at the business, emotional and psychological sides of your brand and helps you to develop a clear strategy to achieve your goals taking into account your values and vision.
They can work with the marketing team and other stakeholders in order develop a cohesive brand and communication strategy that meets both the commercial business goals and the deeper ‘why’ and visionary goals and mission.
A good brand strategist will help you develop a cohesive brand strategy that forms the foundation of your brand. They’ll ask you the right questions and dig beyond the surface level to uncover the true essence of your brand and reflect this back to you to show you how this relates to your brand and business decisions.
Brand Strategy Example
A brand strategy is different to brand guidelines. Brand guidelines show you how to apply your brand, a brand strategy is about what your brand is.
Brand strategy can be a simple as defining the tone of voice you want to use in all communications, or it can be as in-depth as creating a whole plan for who your business is, how it shows up in the world, why and to what end.
What are the benefits of having a strong, cohesive brand strategy?
A strong, cohesive brand strategy can help you to inspire trust, build authority and attract the right kind of customers. It’s not something to be undestimated or overlooked.
5 reasons you need a Brand strategy
1. Stand out from your competitors.
A clear and well-defined positioning will make it easier for customers or clients who are looking at the market as a whole (rather than just one company) to see that yours is different in some way; this could be because of what you offer, the way you offer it or just based on the values that your business stands for.
2. Create a unique and memorable brand.
A strong, cohesive strategy will help you to create an identity that is recognisable from the outset – this means customers or clients won’t need time (or lots of information) before they can recognise your business as different in some way; it also helps them remember who you are when there are lots of companies to choose from.
3. Create a clear and consistent message.
This is important because it helps people understand what your business does, how you’re different, how they can benefit from working with you or from buying your products/services etc., as well as helping them feel confident in their decision (because the information has been presented clearly).
4. Create a visual identity that is aligned with your vision, mission and ideal client.
When you have a solid brand strategy in place you can make decisions steeped in psychology and logic and remove the guesswork and subjectivity of design.
5. Craft a customer experience that is consistent and aligned with your mission.
This means creating an environment where meeting your customer’s needs are front and centre and in line with your shared values.
In summary, a brand strategy is an essential tool for your business , and one that will help you to create a strong, consistent brand that builds trust, loyalty and creates the impact you want in the world.
If you’re looking to create a brand with a solid brand strategy, check out my brand design packages or get in touch.