If you tried two unlabeled sodas, would you be able to distinguish Coke from Pepsi? Most people cannot. However, if a Coke and Pepsi were both put in front of you, would you have a preference? Most people would choose Coke. This is the impact of having a powerful brand identity. When consumers explain why they choose one product or service over another, they tend to mention all of the tangible, or real differences, between the two. The actual reason behind all of the tangible differences is strong brand identity.
So what exactly is brand identity? A brand’s identity is bigger than the actual product or service that is being sold. It is how a business seeks to identify itself within a market. A strong brand identity has a very distinct uniqueness about itself that makes it distinguishable from competitors. Brand identity is so much stronger than just an image. It encompasses a brand’s values, culture, personalities, passions, and everything else that formulates a business and it’s brand. The importance of brand identity could not be stressed enough! It is what leads to brand loyalty and high credibility, which are both essential to success. A well-established brand identity will have consumers happily paying a premium for your product or service. This is the difference between consumers picking a branded or generic product/service. Here are some simple tips that will help you and your business create your brand identity!
Position Your Brand
When you are ready to position your brand, think about the place in your niche, or target market, that you want to really grasp and own. Focus on the benefits that you want your consumers to think of when they think of your brand. Brand positioning and brand credibility go hand in hand. A brand that has strong positioning is maximizing its brand value as well. Remember to keep it personal and create touch points along the customer journey. In other words, maximize your customer relevancy and competitive distinctiveness. Once you nail this down, keep a clear aim at your target and your goals by focusing your marketing strategies on incorporating your business into consumer’s daily lives.
Identify Your Mission
Of course, a top goal of any business is to make money, but the businesses with the best brand identities devote themselves to a cause much greater. Also known as the “brand mantra“, the mission of your business is fundamental to brand identity and maintaining customer loyalty. It is the absolute soul of your brand as it is a promise that must be deliverable. When identifying your mission, focus on the values that embody your business and bring them to life in your mission! For example, Coca-Cola is not just about selling beverages. Their mission statement is: “to refresh the world in mind, body, and spirit. To inspire the moments of optimism and happiness through our brand and actions. To create value and make a difference.” This is the key difference between a product and a brand!
Pinpoint What Makes You Different
It is really important to be able to answer, “What would your customers be missing if you didn’t exist?” If your business is unique to the market, this won’t be hard to answer. However, your business most likely isn’t the only one in your market. Therefore, it is vital for your business to be different. When identifying what makes you different, also establish your business essence. This is the emotional connection that one feels to a brand. For example, Disney’s essence would be “magic” and Apple’s would be “innovative.”
Reflect Your Brand in Your Day-to-Day Operations
After creating your impeccable brand identity, be sure to reflect your brand image in your daily business operations! Staying consistent and easy to understand is a must in order to create those consumer relationships as well as maintaining the value of your business. This means to monitor your brand identity and make sure it is consistent throughout your content, social media, visual design, customer service, and every other aspect of the business. Like other major businesses over time, you will probably go through periods of revamping or tweaking some details. Therefore, make sure to review your brand strategy every once in a while to keep up with these changes.