If you are reading this, you know exactly what branding is and its power. For those, who do not, branding is not just about making the business visible; it is more than that. And Seth Godin- a popular marketing expert and an author, has explained it beautifully.
“A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories, and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another. “
With the world growing more digital, the investment priorities of businesses have changed a lot. The C-suite decides to put money into designing brand strategy and stand outing in this heavy competition. These businesses want to be called outperformers and nothing less.
Inspired by McDonald’s or Nike, many businesses think about designing a logo and choosing the right colors to create a brand identity. But it takes years of hard work to craft the right communication plan that works consistently. Of course, the bottom line is always offering what the customers like in the long run and building trust. It is also about failing more times than winning.
Precisely, great branding is about the language and tone your business has and, based on that, how the brand is perceived. A study showcases that consistent presentation of a brand increases revenue by 33%.
Branding is expensive for some but not for every business. Here are some factors that affect businesses’ costs for branding. Have a look!
Startup Branding Costs
Starting a business involves a lot of risks. You cut corners to focus on priorities. In short, there are a lot of failures involved. So, as per the experts, spend up to 15% of your total budget on branding. You can scale with time, considering the growth parameters.
Look for a marketing agency with a history of helping newly launched businesses make the most of the money.
Branding Costs for Established Business
You are not a startup, but also not an established one. You are already neck to neck with the brands in the market, looking to improve brand perception and come out stronger.
Such brands should invest up to 4% of their total revenue and look for a marketing agency to keep their best foot forward. At the same time, your branding investment must depend upon the gap you need to fill between- how you are perceived and how you want to be perceived. You must look forward to hiring top-notch writers, designers, and developers.
Also Read: Brand Awareness Metrics
Brand Building Process
But before investing in anything, it is important to know the important steps that branding demands.
1. Do competitive research
Analyzing the competitors, consistent brand messaging, the social media channel presence for visual identity and, the value proposition of products & services, and more constitute competitive research. Doing so helps businesses gain a competitive advantage and help create branding strategies for faster delivery to the market.
2. Determine the target audience
Go as specific as you can while determining and evaluating your target audience. There are some of the key factors in demographics to look for, such as age, location, income, education, family status, work & ethnic background, and psychographics include attitudes, values, interests, hobbies, and behavior.
This preciseness will help monitor your customers’ buying behavior even better and make changes to the target audience.
3. What is your brand’s purpose?
Once you know the competitors’ value propositions, it is time to determine yours.
What makes your brand or products or services different from your competitors?
Why should your customers care?
What are the challenges of your customers that you are trying to solve with your products/services?
Business heads have a difficult time finding the answers to such questions, but such an activity is critical for every business.
4. Curate brand strategy and positioning
Company values & identity, how your services & products fit the marketplace, and how you want to communicate them to your potential customer; knowing these details helps you solve an important branding puzzle for your business.
It also includes listening to your customers across all channels.
5. What is your brand personality?
The tone, voice, and emotion related to the brand are determined here. What do you want to sound like? If your brand’s audience is younger, you might want to sound young, modern, and someone who believes in innovation & change. Your business can also have funny, mature, professional, serious, funny, and urban personalities, depending on what your business offers.
6. Do you have a brand story?
A human brain always remembers interactive stories. Stories are interesting and convey emotion. That is why you utilize stories in your brand messaging to connect with customers emotionally.
If your creative team can make a compelling story around the brand, your customers will empathize, care and buy from you.
7. Brand design campaigns
Communicating and strengthening from designing an interactive logo to a catchy tagline becomes comparatively easier. Brand design campaigns majorly include website & logo, packaging, and printing, among other designs.
8. Strengthen your presence with Digital Marketing
Do you think creating a website will position your brand at the top of the competition? No, continuous digital marketing efforts can make it happen. The recipe to position your website at the top of the search engine result pages is to craft a perfect strategy, including SEO & content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, paid advertising, and more.
Cut Branding Costs without Negatively Impacting the Business
Keeping the costs under control is the best thing that you can do for your business. And when it comes to branding costs, you can start with performing marketing audits around software, paid advertisements, social media platforms, and more. By the end of it, you will be able to figure out the areas where you are overspending.
Another aspect that can help you save money is utilizing automation tools. Such tools help your marketing team to cut down efforts, save time and focus on critical tasks. The best example is chatbots for websites and social media.
One of the best things that brands have been doing for a long time is repurposing their old content. For instance, if you have an old blog – you can create a LinkedIn carousel or an infographic out of it. Save time and a lot of effort with this simple hack.
With the world going digital, you can also outsource remote teams. It will also save you time in recruiting employees.
While everything being said, it is important to understand your business inside out, research, and know what is right for your business. Businesses must not blindly follow a trend or their competitors just to be part of it. Be aware that doing so can be stressful and exhausting for your team.
Also, keep making changes to the branding strategy as your business grows. There is nothing better than improvising and adding fresh perspectives to your strategy.