For the month of September, Fluid focused on building a brand. The topics included everything from social media platforms to overlooked marketing techniques. To finish off the month, we held a webinar on brand building. Our special guest this month was Mark Hurst of Connect Partners, a marketing and brand strategy consulting group located in Utah. He joined Fluid’s digital marketing strategist Dustin Cederholm and managing director Phil Case.
Defining Your Brand
In order to have a successful brand, you must first define your brand. What is your company culture, strategy and identity? It is important to see where your brand sits both in the mind of your customers and your employees. Your brand is not only defined in the personal relationships, but in your online presence, interaction and reputation. Make sure your brand purpose is easily recognized!
There are several steps to keep in mind when building a brand:
- Create a story.
- Build off what you have.
- Keep it simple.
- Marry timelessness with relevancy.
- Change more than your logo. Change your culture.
Brand Building Tactics
Today there are many different outlets to build your brand. It is important to have an online presence. A website is one of the first and most important impressions customers have of your brand. Make sure your website is ready for primetime. In addition to your website, social media is very important. YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, and Snapchat are all up-and-coming social networks that provide their own unique merits. Do the research and find which type is the best for your brand. It is also important to decide who you want managing your social media. Many companies offer social media marketing services.
Online reviews are key in the process of building your brand. Peer-to-peer interactions are more important than ever, and people trust online reviews. That’s why it is more important than ever to have lots of reviews—and lots of positive reviews. Google, Glassdoor, Yelp, KSL Local and many more are all great sites to seek reviews on. Other sites such as Needle and Shopper Approved help you build your online reputation.
It is important to provide an excellent experience for all of your customers, but that isn’t always a reality. Even the best brands are bound to have some negative reviews. The key is what you do with those reviews. The best brands address their critics, doing what they can to make the situation right. The review may not be removed, but it can leave a better impression in the mind of a previously dissatisfied customer.
Many companies are too quick to rebrand. When branding or rebranding, make sure you are ready. Is it truly necessary? Ask the tough questions. Poll your employees and your customers. Where does your brand stand? Does it connect with customers? You need the right strategy and a culture people will buy into. Below are a few common branding mistakes.
- No strategy.
- Poor domain.
- Lack of collateral.
- Lack of investment in culture change.
- No external review.
- Losing core offering in design.
- Overcomplicating the brand or leaving it too vague.
- Lack of investment.
- Lack of brand oversight.
In the end, building your brand is about pushing a powerful message that people will connect with. Write your story, share it with the right people, and have a culture that customers want to buy into. Think about people first, and results will come.
Check out the full video below.