Welcome to Branding Bootcamp !. Maria Ross. July 2012. WEEK 3 HOMEPLAY. Identify your three main benefits and start populating your Messaging Platform Roll up the three benefits into a Core Positioning Statement
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You may need to go back and forth between some of these to revise your answers to earlier questions as you discover more about what your business is and what it offers. For example, you may find your prices don’t align with your ideal customer target, so you’ll need to go back and tweak this.
The Brand Strategy Document includes your mission, vision, values, messaging platform, differentiators, attributes, voice, pricing/packages/distribution model and ideal customer profiles. It is a dynamic document that lives and breathes. It will refresh over time as you learn more about your customers, as your market changes, or as you adapt your offerings. It will form the foundation for all your other marketing and even operational decisions.
You should revisit it at least twice a year to ensure you’re on track and things haven’t changed.
Your Brand Strategy should be used to determine the right partners, new hires, marketing channels and company decisions. Use it as a Litmus test for making important, decisions that continue to beat the drum about who you are and what value you offer.
Consistency = memorable, professional, effective communication
Design choices like color, layout, and font can compel the right audience to buy when they are used correctly – or repel your audience from buying when they are not. Be mindful of why you’re selecting it and what it will communicate. Don’t just pick your favorite. Think about your audience.
“Sixty percent of the decision to buy is based on color. The brain registers shape first, then color, then content when recognizing or remembering something, like a logo.” Bridget Perez, Partner & Designer, TRAY Creative
“It’s crucial for brands to pick a font not simply for its popularity, but for the right message it communicates about the brand. This enhances the features of the brand visually.” Ayesha Mathews-Wadhwa, Chief Pixel Bender for PixInk Design “Fonts carry important first impressions to the customer. They can stimulate opinions about company character, moral aptitude, and credibility.”
Share the parts of your story that will inform and delight the reporter’s audience – the soft sell comes from you being the source!
Effective branding is a journey, that takes time - you can’t just flip a switch; you need to track trends to ensure you are on the right path. You can see progress as you go if you always have goals in mind and measure, test, measure, tweak, test, measure to ensure you are moving in the right direction.
Metrics don’t have to be scary – they can be anecdotal and emotional, but can also measure smaller things. Daily sales, # of new clients this quarter, website visits, newsletter signups, better name recognition, etc.
The ultimate metric is sales, but you have to lead the customer there in phases. The steps to a sale are often called the sales cycle:
Effective branding and messaging at each phase can help move your customers to the Purchase phase faster.
Come up with five to ten metrics you will measure to ensure your Brand Strategy, and ultimately you marketing plan, is working effectively. Remember, these can be quantitative or qualitative. It’s actually a good idea to use some of both, so you should record important anecdotal or general feedback you receive. Make your metrics realistic but time-based if you can, such as “20 new newsletter signups each month” or “50 attendees to each monthly event.”
You can have one of the metrics be a sales number if you like, such as “Generate $2 million in revenue this quarter,” but keep that as your ultimate objective — the one to which all your branding and marketing activities, with their individual goals, will lead.
Try to keep your brand goals more aligned to increasing visibility, awareness or visits. For each customer, knowing about you and understanding what you offer is the first step required for an eventual purchase.
Imagine your business is the subject of a cover story in the Wall Street Journal or Entrepreneur Magazine one year from today:
Creating a brand foundation, will help you:
Define who you are and who you serve, crisply and cleanly
Spread the word about what you can do
Focus on the most effective channels
Create customized messaging by audience
Remain true to yourself in all business decisions
Save time and money on marketing tactics and with designers
Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare. (Japanese proverb)
I’m truly honored that you spent your time, energy and money on this journey with me!
Questions, comments, clarity?
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