Brand recognition is, to put it bluntly, what separates the wheat from the chaff. The number of brands that can immediately be recognized by the average member of your target market is incredibly small compared to all the competitors out there. If you want brand recognition, you have to realize just how important your brand is and work on building that familiarity. Here, we’re going to look at how you lay the foundations that can see your brand becoming more than well-known, it can become iconic.
What is the story behind your brand? What’s the value that your business offers and the solution that it provides to your target market? Figure out the narrative that gives it the most emotional and practical appeal. Then find the single best way to tell that brand story. Video marketing is easily one of the most attention catching and efficient methods of telling a story. The right mix of visuals and audio can create an experience that lingers in the consumer’s head long after it’s done and can convey the most information in the shortest amount of time. But content marketing and product packaging can help tell and reinforce your brand story, too. Ensure you keep it consistent, or else you’re asking customers to track more than one narrative which will confuse things.
It’s not all about direct marketing, either. Your brand has to drip from every location your business runs in.
Think, for instance, of Apple’s stores. They are more than just your average tech business shopfront. From the first glance, they have an identity all their own. The same goes for your offices, too. Use office fit outs to ensure that both the imagery and the idea of the brand if well-reflected. If your company is to be a bastion of creativity and bold ideas, then your office needs to look bold and be engaging. Both your customers and your team have to buy into the brand, after all.
With that in mind, make sure that your team is representing the brand. Professional dress codes are one thing, but you can make sure that they actually wear the brand when they’re out and about. Whether it’s at a trade show, conference, networking event, or a business meeting, you can equip them with little accessories that keep your visual branding in the mix. Custom lanyards, wristbands, business cards, whatever you choose, just make sure that your branding is somewhere there on the display. At trade shows, you can go even further with elaborate booth design to draw attention and help you stand out from a crowd that’s actively competing against you. Beyond giving your brand a little visual reinforcement, it reminds your employees of which team they represent, which can boost their own motivation and sense of belonging within the company.
People know who our rivals are. We get tweeted about them daily. We figured if we’re all going to have beef, we should at least have fresh beef. https://t.co/lcGiRcaUCG
— Wendy’s (@Wendys) 29 March 2018
The brand voice is playing a more and more important role in making your business recognizable. If you want a good example of that, then look no further at Wendy’s social media marketing as of late. One might wonder how exactly their distinct brand of online sass ties into their food brand, but the truth that it repeats the same values and message while adjusting it to the digital medium. You don’t necessarily have to start calling out competitors and lightly trolling fans, but you do have to find your own personality and your own strengths on social media. If you have a team member that can establish their own identity and voice on the platform to better represent your products, let them run with it. Even if it doesn’t match your “usual” brand voice.
If you ever plan on representing your business personally, whether it’s at a business meeting or at a conference, then having your own kind of familiarity can help as well. Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Phil Spencer, some leaders have brand recognition all on their own. Build your personal brand by contributing columns and posts to established media channels. Host your own conferences. Network and make sure that others in the industry know who you are. Make your personality distinct and be confident in your message. You can be your own best ambassador and help prop up your brand if you’re just willing to back yourself.
That’s not to say that your team members can’t be your brand ambassadors, too. If you’re entrusting them with customer support, sales, event hosting, or anything else that puts them on the front line, they need to be on board with the brand message. In fact, getting the whole team on board can do wonders for their motivation and sense of purpose. When you’re sharing new business plans or communicating a strategy, make sure you touch back on that brand story and what, exactly, your mission statement is. They may well understand what they’re doing it, but the brand objective can provide the why and give it a context that makes them much more engaged in their own tasks and aims.
Besides you, your team, and your marketing, there is another who can tell your brand story to great effect: your market. If you include customers in your marketing efforts, it adds more a human voice to the branding while reinforcing the legitimacy of your message. People are a lot more likely to believe other consumers than they believe marketing messages, that’s the simple fact of the matter. Ask them for their success stories, use case studies from real people, get them to leave reviews and testimonials, request they share their experience through social media. Leverage the real-life experiences of customers in whatever way you can get them to agree to. Word-of-mouth and real customer engagement is too valuable to waste.
Brand recognition makes converting and marketing more effective than ever. Before you have to sell customers on what you do, they already know it. Aim for it in everything you do by keeping it consistent, keeping it powerful, and disseminating it when possible.