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Your company’s brand development strategy should be far more than just a name and a logo (although both are vitally important, as we’ll discuss later). It should represent who you are and what you stand for, conveying your reputation and defining what you are all about to your target audience.
Unfortunately, however, brands cannot be conjured up with a click of the fingers. They take a degree of planning and preparation in order to get the correct end result. So, where do you start? Right here, actually. Let’s get down to it:
1) What’s Your Wider Brand Development Strategy?
Knowing what your overall business strategy is will give you the foundation upon which to build your brand. How big do you really want to become? How do you plan to get there? What methods will you use?
Lay out everything you can think of in order to give your brand a decent head start.
2) Who Are Your Clients?
Knowing exactly who you’ll be targeting will allow you to market to them more effectively. Try and narrow down your audience as much as possible; very few companies succeed in selling to ‘everybody’.
3) Conduct Thorough Research
Once you know your prospective clientele, it’s time to research them. Quality research will get you to where you want to go in the quickest possible timeframe. Look at things from your customer’s perspective and try to anticipate what their needs and expectations will be.
4) Work Out Your Market Position
What makes your company different to your competitors? Why would a client choose to work with you rather than one of your rivals? What benefits are you offering that others in your chosen field are not?
Create a short positioning statement that lays out what you are all about. This really doesn’t have to be long; in fact, it shouldn’t be. Develop five or six sentences tops that capture exactly what your company is all about and where you want to get to.
5) What’s Your Message?
From your positioning statement, you can begin to tailor the message that you want to send out to your prospective clients, employees and industry influencers. Ensure that each camp is catered for separately, but maintain the same ethos throughout.
6) Create Your Name, Tagline and Logo
Now that you have an insight into your audience and a clear idea about what your company’s future holds, you can now create a name, tagline and logo that suits your business. Many make the mistake of doing this first, and they’re missing a trick.
By putting in the hard work that you’ve done in steps 1 to 5, you are better equipped to get this right first time. This is vital to your brand development strategy, as these three things are going to be key elements of your overall brand.
7) Consider Your Marketing Strategy
Again, it is important not to think too narrowly here. Many companies jump on one bandwagon and throw their entire budget at it – not a good idea. Diversification will allow you to reach more people, so consider all of your options.
Digital marketing should be paired with printed media, cold calls followed up with written correspondence, and so on. Going the extra mile will make a huge difference to your business’ overall reach.
8) Build Your Online Presence
It is critical to have an online presence these days in order to make the most of one of the most effective marketing methods available.
Build a website and begin to nurture a community amongst your target audience. Social media works exceptionally well for this, so be sure to create Facebook and Twitter profiles for your business (and, if your business is image-driven, consider Instagram and Pinterest too).
9) Be prepared
To execute your brand development strategy successfully, you are going to need to have everything in place to help you manage your promotional push. Having the key elements ready to go as and when they are needed is vital, as delays in production can happen.
For instance, if you intend to include a video as part of your online sales funnel, make sure that the video is in the can before firing out your first round of emails.
10) Test, Test And Test Again
Once you are off and running, it’s no time to sit back and relax. Testing will allow you to see how things are going and whether or not you are on the right track.
Tweaking strategies here and there will allow you to promote your brand exactly how you want it to be seen. If things are not going the way you would like, act fast; they are not going to right themselves.
By including and following these ten steps in your brand development strategy, you will be well on the way to establishing your brand and creating a position in the market that is unique to your business. 🙂
Did you find the above ten brand development strategy steps helpful?
Do you have anything to add that I may have missed?
Please tell us all by leaving a comment below.
About the Author
Natalie Sullivan is the Director of Design FX Studio, one of the top Website and Graphic Design Agencies in the South East. Natalie has been helping SMEs to improve their corporate image and visual communications for the last 22 years.
- License: Royalty Free or iStock source: https://pixabay.com/en/stamp-characters-label-original-143192/