How To: Developing an Effective Brand (Strategy)

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We could begin by telling you what a brand really is. But we won’t. What we could begin with is by telling you what a brand is not.
A brand is not a logo. It’s not an image formed by lines and colors to communicate the name of your organization. A brand – a successful brand – is what encompasses the length and breadth of your identity, your values, the relationships you’ve built over time and the quality that your clientele has come to expect from you.
In the social media world, successful brands are built upon two tenets that we see being repeated in every related discussion – authenticity and transparency. It’s an environment with staggering numbers where 50 million people “Like” a brand, every day. Overall, the numbers show an increasing need to create a brand that stands apart in the midst of all the advertising noise.
1. Step One – Soul Searching
Why are you providing your service? What are your values, your vision and your mission? How do you want your customers to feel after they’ve interacted with your brand? What kind of an experience do you want them to leave with?
Discovering your brand’s identity before you launch it is extremely important – once you have the answers for the questions above, it’s time to start building.
2. Building Relationships
Building a brand requires a long-term, committed relationship with customers, where you truly understand their needs and forge a path to fulfill them. If you’re running a social media campaign, take the time to listen and respond. Create a space that allows your customer base to interact with you, and don’t hinder the negative comments or critique.
Remember, behind every “Like” and every comment is a real human being who brings an opportunity for magnified word-of-mouth advertising with every interaction.
3. One Step Ahead
Research and staying ahead of the curve are painstaking tasks, we know, but they’re necessary. There’s simply no way to downplay the importance of taking constant inventory of your social media presence and updating your activities across Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
From videos to multi-platform posts to engaging with and responding to customers, make sure to set aside time dedicated to connecting and updating yourself on industry trends. The effort goes a long way in ensuring brand loyalty and a happy clientele.
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