03 Jan Emotional Branding; Why is it SO important?
Your Brand is the Square Route of Your Marketing Success!
I am often surprised by the number of enquiries we get where people can’t answer the most basic of questions when it comes to their brand. Companies often know the answers deep down but they have never been through the process of documenting this information and so their answers are often woolly and open to change and contradiction.
It seems that we are all guilty, though, it is all too easy to get carried away with having a logo designed, building a website, creating some flyers or even brochures and feel a bit lost when it comes to the messaging itself.
So I thought I would put together some basic pointers to help you tie down your brand and get your head around what you need to document to really get your brand working for you.
Identify your Customer Avatars
To really understand how your brand impacts your target audience you need to tie down an avatar of your IDEAL client. An avatar is a list of demographic and personality observations that help you understand more about who your audience is and where they hang out. Most importantly it will help you to visualise who you are talking to whenever you communicate with them; it’s surprising the positive impact this has! A good avatar will include the following information:
- What are their Goals and Values?
- Where do they source information?
- What is their demographic information?
- What are their challenges and pain points?
- What are their objections to purchasing from you?
- What is their role in the purchase process?
- Your business is likely to have more that one avatar, especially if you offer a range of products and services so create an avatar for each of them.
Focus on Benefits not Features
View your brand from your target client’s perspective and ask yourself “what’s in it for me?”
Your Key Message
Boil down your brand to its absolute essence. Potential customers will make a snap decision based on what they can derive from interacting with your brand, if you can’t nail exactly what you do in a few words; you’ve already lost them. Understanding what your key message is gives you more power to tell your audience what you do before they make that decision.
Your Brand Category
If you were the only business in the world doing what you do, how would you categorise your business? Often we are forced to crowbar our company into a given category but that doesn’t help your audience find you. If you had to invent a whole new category for your brand, what would it be? Once you have decided on this and use it, others may well follow which only serves to verify its existence AND that you are the leaders in your industry.
Your Brand Personality
Kevin Roberts, Saatchi & Saatchi’s Worldwide CEO said “Emotions are the target for marketing in the 21st century. Engage the emotions and you are where the action is.” If you don’t tie down your brand personality how are you going to engage with your audience? Ask yourself “If my brand were a celebrity; who would they be?”. This also helps you to set a tone of voice for any copy you may need to create. Once completed, read back through the copy and ask yourself if that is how your chosen celebrity would have said it!
Your Brand Archetype
Choose a stereotype and pigeonhole your brand. Again, this will help you build the character of your brand; choose from:
- Regular Guy/Girl
Using your key message as the basis of your tagline can help you make sure that your audience knows what you do every time they see it. A tagline should be short, snappy and descriptive; a clever play on words can help but don’t try to be too clever!
Make a promise and keep it!
How can/do your customers interact with each other?
Connect with customers by sharing core values relevant to your field, stand for something more than making money and strike a chord.
Connect with your customers by sharing powerful and positive beliefs about your brand and the environment it sits in.
List any negative impacts on your brand and then consider how you might use them to your advantage.
Once you have gone through this process, user your answers to create a brand manual that you can pass out throughout the business. Every business has a number of brand touchpoints (the time’s when people interact with your brand) and keeping all of the above consistent across all of these touchpoints will only breed confidence and trust in your brand. I also can’t emphasise enough how important your brand manual will be to any designers or marketers that you employ to help you promote your products and services.