Sometimes, a reminder is helpful.
Time to put the mouse down, step back and see the big picture. Let’s remember why we’re marketing professionals: We sell stuff. Branding helps customers make buying decisions. And there’s actually some science behind it.
People want to simplify their decision-making. There’s an overabundance of choices in just about every product category. Take food, for instance. Ordering from a restaurant menu is a process that, studies show, should be anything but complicated. People are happier making a choice from a short menu than one with a long list of items. I, for example, am giddy when spaghetti bolognese is on the menu. But that’s just me.
The way people manage an extensive menu is to break it up into smaller choices. They may just focus on the seafood section, or a short list of burger options. They do this all without thinking about how they’re doing it.
Branding makes it all easier.
We all live in an over-stimulated world. This is especially true for the automotive industry, which has an abundant choice of suppliers. Brands act as a mental shortcut that makes the decision process quicker and intuitive. But for that to happen, brands need to create that shortcut in people’s minds. The shortcut is made up of experiences, memories and emotions that people attach to brands. Good branding plants those things in people’s minds, helping them take root and grow.
Check your surroundings.
But this only works when your brand is fully developed. A brand is more than your company’s name or logo. To paraphrase marketing expert Seth Godin, a brand platform is the sum of everything that surrounds a business: all the words, images, values, stories and expectations people have about it. It’s your promise of what customers can expect of you. It’s all you stand for as an organization. A brand should communicate your company’s values, personality, and purpose.
The result? A strong brand platform helps to:
- Connect more authentically with your audience
- Create a unique voice that is recognizable and memorable
- Clarify your message
- Refine your story, so that it’s relatable, authentic and engaging
- Increase your likeability/desirability as a company
And most importantly, it gives people reasons to trust you and buy from you.
It’s a good idea to regularly take stock of your brand and see if it’s working as hard as it should be. If there’s any doubt, get to work. Consider getting a second opinion from an outside experts. A fresh perspective will always help.