Brand Image is not something which you can just whip up with a few late nighters, a couple bottles of wine and a long weekend. Brand Image is something that you build with time, consistency and unwavering direction towards a common goal. And it is not just something that you yourself as the business owner implement. It is executed every single day, by your staff, on your website, by your choices. Every time an employee puts on their uniform they are representing your brand. And every time that you send an email to your database, you are conveying your brand. All these tiny, seemingly meaningless actions are sculpting your brand image. And if the picture is good, this will be your best brand marketing tool ever.
As mentioned above, Brand Image is not a quick fix flash in the pan. It is an amalgamation of all the encounters and experiences that your customers and target audience are having with your brand at this present time. Positive experiences will drive your customers to repurchase, recommend to your audience and become your best advocators. This is something that you will actively work towards every day for the longevity of your brand. Brand Image is a subtle blend of strength and strategy. Implement a consistent brand strategy while flexing those marketing muscles will see you underway.
The truth is, a lot of businesses (possibly your competitors) do not think about creating a brand image until there is a problem with the one they are creating. The appeal of creating a good brand image is that it makes a lasting impression.
Call it superficial but the way that your employees talk, dress and interact with your customers says a lot about your brand. Think of a bad customer services experience you have had. Did it make you feel disappointed? Did it back you up and make you avoid the business altogether? It is important when starting a new employee to give them an induction where you talk about the brand, the way they are expected to behave when representing the brand and the consequences if these requests are not met. Remember the old saying the customer is always right? Well, my boss would always tell me, often between clenched teeth, the customer is always the customer. Presentation is not dead. People enjoy those little experiences.
I’m sure you can spot the golden arches from a mile away, I’m sure you could recognise those white apple headphones anywhere. These Brands did not build their image overnight. But they sure did build them through time with consistency. If you do not put effort into maintaining a consistent brand image, then your brand will not be recognisable.
Imagine walking into Tiffany and Co and all the staff is just wearing whatever they wanted. One girl is wearing some cat pajamas and the door staff has a beer hat on with a straw in their mouth. What does that look like to you? Chaos. A polished brand can show that you didn’t just start your business yesterday on a whim. It shows you are thoughtful, that you have had success, that you are organised which will reflect on your products/ services to follow. Even just starting with a personalised email address and website URL. A business card which is up to date.
If you continuously blend your brand image with your brand strategy, whether it be the freshest produce is the most efficient service, that will reflect for your customers. The more often that you can deliver your product/ service in correlation with your brand promise, the easier it will be for your customers to remember who you are and what you stand for.
If you do not know how to build your ideal brand persona, read our blog. Once you have identified your key audiences, you can begin to understand your ideal customer. Your brand persona should appeal to your ideal customer, it should relate to them. It can be helpful to create a style guide highlight your tone of voice, imagery, and personality to ensure this is executed consistently.
Content is the fuel that drives marketing activities. To elevate your brand profile, you’ll need to deliver a steady stream of content. Content does not always mean blogs and podcasts. Content can simply be what you do and do not choose to post. Your website, your infographics.