As a top marketer, you are used to solving a myriad of problems, from content issues to stumbling blocks with your SEO. There are some issues that can prove a little trickier to come to terms with though, such as brand identity. In fact, some marketers regularly neglect brand identity as they just don’t understand the importance of it.
But why does brand identity pose such a difficulty to marketers?
One of the biggies is that they don’t want to use any resources in this area. As well as that, some marketing managers believe that it’s super difficult to track progress correctly and joke that you need to be a mind reader in order to get it right.
If you’ve had all of these thoughts about your brand identity, then this blog post is dedicated to you. Read on to find out why your company’s branding is crucial.
What is Brand Identity?
We like this quote by 99 designs:
Brand identity is the collection of all elements that a company creates to portray the right image to its consumer.
Let's take Airbnb as an example. They have a strong mission that people relate to: "Belong Anywhere". And they really work on putting this message across. Take the A in the Airbnb logo. It represents four major things that relate to the Airbnb brand identity: people, place, love, and Airbnb. Their colour palette continues this feeling of love with its light red colour, and the circular font they use is friendly.
Their identity is working. How do we know? We took a little peek into Airbnb's brand awareness.
Why You Need to Create a Brand Identity to Grow
Without Good Brand Identity, You’ll Never Be Recognized
Your business’ logos and colors will help to make your brand highly recognizable. Everybody knows the blue and yellow of Ikea and Coca Cola’s iconic red. As soon as someone sees your color palette together with your logo, they’ll instantly realize that they’re looking at you and your company.
Don’t worry about the general public getting sick of seeing your brand everywhere. This is actually something to be embraced as continued recognition will lead to trust. So, the more people see you and recognize you, the sooner you can build trust in your brand. Before you know it, you’ll have become a household name!
If you don’t think that your brand currently provides good recognition, here are some things you can change:
Train your team. Everyone needs to be on the same page when it comes to brand identity. If your employees keep on getting it wrong, then your customers will never recognize the branding.
Create a new logo. This needs to reflect your business’s message and values. Don’t just take your colors for granted either. Bright colors that suit your company will make a huge impact.
Come up with a new company name. Are you sure your current name is pulling its weight? Find out more about choosing a new name here.
Brand Identity Builds Loyalty and Trust
In order to differentiate yourself from the competition, your brand needs to have something unique. Why not make your brand this USP? A strong brand identity can really help you build up a good relationship with your customers. If they feel that they share the same values as you, they will be attracted to your business and will feel comfortable purchasing from you over your competitors.
Once you keep this connection alive, a long-term relationship will develop and ultimately lead to customer loyalty and higher lifetime value (LTV). In fact, customers who have an emotional connection with a brand have a 306% higher LTV.
A Poor Brand Identity Will Sink Your Revenues...
A good brand leads to plenty of recognition and brand awareness, which should hopefully help with your company’s word-of-mouth recommendations. As your branding will clearly stick in your customers’ minds, they won’t have to think twice when an acquaintance asks them for some suggestions – your company’s name will drop right off their tongue!
But how would that situation play out if a customer couldn’t remember your brand at all?
When someone approaches them for a recommendation, they’re not very likely to offer your company as a suggestion as they’ll have forgotten all about you. If you lose any sales through word of mouth this way, it’s a portion of your revenue going straight down the drain.
Make sure you don’t lose out on revenue by actioning all of the points already mentioned in this article right away. Then you’ll have a company with a very credible public face and will be able to watch your profits and revenues climb upwards.
...While Good Brand Identity Can Grow Revenue
Think of Apple. Essentially, Apple's high price point is a result of the strong, reliable brand it has built. They are able to charge a premium price because, in the minds of their customers, their product is worth paying more for than the many other technology brand out there, despite that fact that they are on the same level or even better. You too can attract high-paying customers by initially spending the money needed to create a strong brand identity.
How to Build Your Brand Identity
Knowing what you want your brand identity to be is just the first step. Then you need to build your brand identity.
There are many ways in which you can do so:
The list goes on.
It won't be possible to build your brand identity via all these channels at once. Asses which are best for you currently and revisit them again in the future to see if these are still the best channels for your brand.
Once you’ve created your new brand identity, you will need to ensure that there is consistency across the board. Make sure your team are all briefed by creating some branding guidelines that they should always follow. If everyone goes rogue and does their own thing, your brand will be majorly flawed with inconsistencies, which will completely damage any trust that your customers had in you.
Psst. Come closer.
Here’s a secret that will help you stay consistent throughout your whole brand identity: define your target audience.
Once you know who your brand needs to appeal to, create an audience persona. If you share this persona with your marketing team, then everyone can always have in mind who they are trying to appeal to with any new campaigns, strategies, and publications.
Take Brand Identity Inspiration From These 3 Brands
Here are three of our favourite brands. We talk through how they’ve achieved enviable brand awareness with their target demographic.
The retail giant Foot Locker is a household name with 79% brand awareness across the general population; now that’s pretty good, wouldn’t you say? Of that 79%, 74% would consider using the brand, and almost half (44%) would choose Footlocker as their preferred sports brand*.
So what have they done to achieve results like these? Firstly, they’re in tune with their audience. Last year, during the pandemic, they launched a campaign that centred around embracing individuality; it was reported that the new campaign featured “leading changemakers who are championing individuality and a more progressive future for their communities and beyond.”
According to a 2018 survey, over 23 % of respondents aged 18 to 29 years stated that they had shopped for shoes in person at Foot Locker in the last 12 months. And their 2020 campaign shows them further connecting with this demographic through values and movements that matter most to them.
Everyone’s heard of Airbnb; if you haven’t, you’ve been living under a rock! But why does everyone know about Airbnb? Yes, they market everywhere, TV ads, social media ads — but their big driver initially was word of mouth.
They realised that referrals accounted for millions of dollars of sales. Staying in an Airbnb is a personal experience that is underpinned by their tagline “Belong Anywhere”. Consumers instantly feel at ease, which is reflected in the brand awareness stats below...look how high those numbers are! It seems, regardless of age, people are more than willing to use Airbnb.
When booking an Airbnb, you find the best location, you read through the reviews, and pick the best place for your needs. Reviews are a magnificently powerful and trustworthy form of marketing because they’re user-generated. So trustworthy in fact that 79% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends or family.
So if you’re trying to craft a brand identity people will love, take a leaf out of Airbnb’s book — invest in a referral programme, then focus on the delighted customers to convert new customers by building up those customer reviews. Reviews speak volumes and enable users to make snap decisions about your brand.
JBL manufactures high-end audio equipment — a little more of a niche market than Airbnb or Foot Locker. So you’d expect general population brand awareness to be smaller, which it is, and it currently stands at 27%. Of that 27%, 74% would consider using the brand. This shows although their audience is small, it’s mightly engaged!
Their audience skews to the male gender with an increase in brand awareness of 30%. The female audience has seen a significant drop in brand awareness by 19%. What does this tell us? That the JBL brand identity is focused more on the male audience; perhaps they’re their more profitable customers?
But what makes their brand identity so great? They’re known for their high-quality, affordable equipment. They’re competing with premium brands such as Apple, but their brand identifies with the younger generation z demographic, and that’s apparent with the kind of content they share online.
*all statistics are taken from our brand tracking software. Find out how your brand fares with its audience by booking a demo now.
As you can see, your company’s brand identity is extremely important. When you invest wisely into it, it can, in fact, bring you very tangible results. And even though some entrepreneurs out there might still disagree, it certainly is something that you can effectively track. When tracked properly, you’ll be rewarded with very precise insights into previous campaigns that you can put to work in future marketing projects.