By: creatingbrands On: January 17, 2017 In: Brands Comments: 0

Most businesses realize the important link between growth and profitability and effectively branding the products or services they market to the public. Some business owners and their management teams begin the branding process with an analysis of market trends and consumer surveys to obtain data which they carefully scrutinize and discuss before moving ahead to focus on the cost of branding. After many meetings and exchanges of emails, they might shift their attention to putting together a team to come up with brand ideas and concepts for further discussion and analysis.

For too many companies, the process of building a successful brand strategy continues to go on and on without ever making it into the implementation phase. Planning is essential to developing your brand, but you need to implement that plan to achieve the success you want for your company or product. Here is a simple, step-by-step summary of how you can take your company from talking about a brand to actually having one and finding ways to improve it.

Develop a blueprint to guide you along the way

A blueprint is nothing more than a plan for everyone involved in the development and implementation of your brand strategy to follow. It should contain clearly defined responsibilities, so the members of your team will know what is expected of them and the schedule for accomplishing those tasks. This provides a way to keep things moving along by setting goals and offering a method of holding people accountable to meet them.

It is important for the success of your blueprint that it is realistic in the goals and the time allotted for accomplishing them. Discussing the brand strategy blueprint with member of your organization who will be playing a role in the development and implementation of it should take place before making the blueprint operational.

People create brands, so work with your people

Lost in the flurry of activity frequently associated with implementing a brand strategy is the role played by the people within your organization to make it a success. Bringing the members of your team on board to create enthusiasm and support for your brand strategy should be one of the first steps in your blueprint. If the members of your organization buy into the concept of creating a brand for your company or for a particular product or product line, they will be more likely to get behind the idea and vigorously promote it.

Know your customers and understand what motivates them

The goal of branding is to obtain instant recognition among consumers and an association in their minds of your company with the products and services they wish to purchase. Accomplishing your branding goal begins with identifying the audience you wish to target. One place to start is with data collected by your organization of buying trends of current and past customers.

An important aspect of getting to know your consumers is learning about their feelings toward your organization and its products and services. This information might already be available to you through the feedback your customer service people receive from consumers. You can augment this data with consumer surveys to create a brand strategy to attract new customers while retaining existing ones who are already loyal to your organization.

Instead of shaping your brand to the industry, shape the industry to your brand

The ultimate goal of your branding strategy is to make your company stand out from your competitors in the industry. You never want to be one of the members of the pack. Success and growth usually goes to the industry leader who manages to separate itself in the minds of consumers from its competitors.

Nike could have settled for being another face in the athletic apparel industry, but it immediately went to work making itself stand out from its competitors. Instead of offering athletic footwear that would be indistinguishable from the products already on the market, the company used its brand and the marketing of it to make the Nike logo synonymous with superior quality and performance. Nike did not enter the market to sell sneakers. The Nike branding strategy promoted a message that positioned its products as superior to anything already in the marketplace.

Branding is a process that requires reassessment to be most effective

Your work does not end once your brand is developed and implemented. The effectiveness of a brand must be evaluated and assessed from time to time and corrective measures taken in response to consumer trends, competitor initiatives and the introduction of new products or innovations in the industry.

Simply because your brand strategy is working is not a signal for your organization to sit back and become complacent. At CreatingBrands.com, we give you the tools to evaluate the effectiveness of your brand strategy and respond to changes to make it better.

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