10 Tips to Building a Strong Brand
Want to build a strong and memorable brand but not sure where to start? Here are 10 crucial steps.
1. Establish a strong idea
Don’t settle for a generic and incomprehensible idea that not even management can understand. It’s hard to gather power and make a difference. Treat yourself to being visionary. If this is a direction you are looking for, avoid being rational. Ponder the idea of a desire, a belief or a position on a new tomorrow. A strong idea is intuitive, emotionally attractive and differentiated. It is strong in that it acts as a guiding principle for what is being done today and for what is to be done tomorrow.
2. Question the degree of differentiation in your idea and the offer it provides
Be completely honest with yourself. If you are in a mature industry, the likelihood is that the four, five largest players are perceived as identical from the market’s perspective.
In business, it tends to be a “scream as loud as you can from the top” competition. But save time, money and voting power by not participating in that race. Instead, make sure your idea is differentiating yourself and building upon it. It has consequences all the way in your offer. And it will certainly be perceived as clearer and more distinctive of the market; unlike a screaming voice.
3. Strengthen the degree of differentiation through a not only rightful but also highly differentiating identity
The rule is simple: go against the crowd. This is the only way you can stand out in a competitive industry. If others do it one way, do it in another. Go your own way, forget about the conventional. Just as with your idea and your offer – find the uniqueness. Prepare that many will question you and claim that your direction is wrong. This is fine as long as you have a strong idea and established strategy.
Just because you have done things in a certain way over the past years does not mean that you should continue in the same way for the next years.
Rather the opposite. The future is open, and there can of course, be security in doing what you always have – a winning concept – when you do not really know what to expect. But now we are completely honest. You never become a champion with safety as a strategy. Release the grief and venture. Only then can you win big. Dare to try new things and take risks.
5. Accept change
It sounds cliché, but we are actually living in a rapidly changing world. Be consistent over time but do not overestimate the saying that “customers probably have not tired even if we have ourselves”. Today the pace is higher and the impressions are overwhelming. It places enormous demands on what we can say and achieve. Be consistent but not afraid to develop. And the change itself can often stir things up- it puts you on the map.
6. Purchased media
Don’t sit in someone else’s lap and take the advertising fatigue seriously. The best advertising is not perceived as advertising and the best communication is owned by you in your own channels. Don’t confuse traditional, purchased, advertising with how your brand communicates. The purchased advertising does not help you to build a strong and unique brand. It helps you to gain awareness and influence purchasing behavior in some cases.
But it is an unnecessarily large cost to bear. Understand, adapt and take advantage of the ever-changing communication landscape to your advantage and you can get at least the same for a lower cost. Despite all the unnecessary costs, the absolute worst thing about the purchased media is its nature – you bring a monologue to those you want to call your friends. It is both prejudiced and outdated.
7. Have a dialogue with your audience
It is impossible to build relationships through one-way communication. Whether it is about two individuals or a brand and its stakeholders. Talk to those you love. For discussions on interesting and relevant topics. Let them speak. Suddenly, your communication may begin to be perceived as customer service with added value. This also helps greatly with building customer relations.
8. Focus on your target groups
Assume that your customers are someone else’s customers who sometimes buy your services and products. The perspective will make you question your own activities and the added value they add. The perspective will keep you on your toes. Bet on always exceeding their expectations. Show that you appreciate them. Then they will surely come back.
9. A coherent experience is not the same as an identical experience
Have no confidence in your manual. Every opportunity and contact surface requires their effort. An ad cannot translate directly to a retail space. Respect every opportunity and every situation. Try to outdo yourself and your brand at every effort.
10. Be extremely ambitious
The world does not need more brands. The world needs more amazing brands. It is a much more demanding job to develop and manage a fantastic brand. It is sometimes painful to push boundaries and it is often uncomfortable to enter territory that no one has ever walked. Do it anyway, it’s more fun when you’re done and you will have done something great, not just for your own organization but for the whole world.
If you have done this, your brand will get customers and consumers to buy, run your own organization, contribute to a faster pace of innovation, a buffer if things go wrong, an ethically better world, and reuse and sharing, force you to do a better job