Brand Marketing Tips: How to Build a Brand in 2021 [Checklist]

/ June 9, 2021 | 8 Mins Read

Brand Marketing Tips: How to Build a Brand in 2021 [Checklist]

How to make a brand recognizable – this article helps you understand how to increase brand awareness and get the most out of your campaigns. Follow these branding tips to boost your success rate.

Brand marketing is a way to promote your brand by selling it the same way an advertiser would sell a product or service. 

Essentially, brand marketing tells a story about your company through symbolism, words, and images. This brand information “package” is then set before the customer to help them make their final buying decision. But in order to make a long-lasting impression, you need a cohesive strategy to lead you to success. 

In this post, we look at some of the most effective brand awareness examples from top global brands and talk about how you can take cues from these brands as you build your expert branding market strategy.       

Recommended: Small Business Branding: How To Build A Strong Brand Image On A Budget 

1. What is brand marketing? 

Brand marketing is the term used in marketing to define the extent to which your brand is recognized and recalled when it comes to making purchasing decisions. It is closely related to brand recognition – the extent to which people can identify your brand and distinguish it from thousands of others. 

These two phenomena revolve around the same factors  – what makes your brand stand out from the crowd. Visual indicators like logo colors and fonts, online brand presence, tone of voice, storytelling – all of these add up to the brand’s reputation. 

2. Why is building a brand important?

Brand awareness is key for a business to become profitable, regardless of size. It is the primary ingredient of any marketing plan. Not only will it increase your revenue, but it will also affect the way your business is perceived:

a. It cultivates trust 

According to Oberlo, 81% of consumers say they need to trust a brand to buy from it. The more transparent you are in your brand marketing, the more people will begin to trust you. That doesn’t mean you have to spill the beans about internal issues and financial ups and downs. 

It’s more about admitting that issues exist and addressing them, having a clear refund policy, etc. These little things have a big influence on a brand’s reputation, but many businesses overlook this, to their detriment. 

b. It creates associations 

Just think how often you use the phrase “Google it” instead of “search for it online.” This is the epitome of popularity for a brand – when it becomes an eponym. These brand names replace the words used to describe them, Check out these brand awareness examples:

●       Jacuzzi – a hot tub

●       Onesies – bodysuits

●       Kleenex – facial tissues

●       Chapstick – a lip balm

●       Sharpie – a permanent marker 

You might even have forgotten some of these were once brand names, yet now you use them as common nouns. 

c. It increases the brand’s importance 

Building a strong brand is also about elevating your business in the eyes of your customers. A strong brand strategy helps you spread the word about your products and goods and prove to everyone you’re worthy of their attention. Gaining prominence in your industry means others will look up to you and get inspiration from your marketing tactics. 

3. How to build a brand marketing strategy

So, what makes a good brand? First, you need to analyze the essential parts of a marketing plan in general. Then, you can focus on the details and choose specific approaches to promote your business. 

a. Components

The three main components of a successful brand marketing strategy are brand messaging, brand imagery, and brand recognition. 

Brand messaging represents the overall message of the brand marketing strategy. Brand messaging includes everything from the products and services they provide to how they treat their customers. Brand messaging should always aim to leave a lasting impression on potential customers. 

Nike is one of the most successful global brand names. They have a strong set of values that they successfully integrate into Nike’s marketing strategy and campaigns. Nike’s core values of commitment, energy, innovation, creativity, and performance are what have kept them ahead of their competitors for so long.  

Brand imagery is the visual representation of a company and its core values. Photographs, posters, videos, business cards, logos, social media profiles, even Telegram stickers – all of these can be used to represent the brand. 

The third key ingredient to any marketing strategy is brand recognition. Recognition means ensuring that a customer knows who you are, what you do, and where you are. Brand recognition is vital because it encourages consumers to use your services when applicable, whether via a referral to your business’s website or when they notice advertising in a local publication. This form of recognition is referred to as brand image and is extremely important for the long-term success of a brand.

b. Techniques

Building up your brand marketing strategy from scratch may seem daunting. So let’s take a look at some of the ideas that have been proven to work when it comes to developing your strong branding. 

Social media brand Awareness 

The most popular course of action to put your brand out there is to use social media. Build brand awareness through social media from the well-established like Instagram,TikTok, you have a whole range of networks you can use to your advantage. 

You can start with simple text-based posts on Facebook, cross-promote them on Twitter, use Instagram stories to engage your audience, and top it off with exclusive content on TikTok. With the help of content creation tools, you can diversify your postings to get better exposure. 

Storytelling 

Good storytelling should encompass all of the channels you use for promoting your brand. You cannot always be sure where your potential customers first encounter your business – in their recommendations on social media, via organic search, or ads on YouTube. 

The way you present your brand should be consistent, using the same tone of voice and color scheme. 

Referral programs 

A referral program is practically word-of-mouth marketing. When people like a company’s product or service, they recommend it to their friends, relatives, and followers. You can push them just a notch by giving them something in return for a recommendation – a discount for their next purchase, a small gift, or a shoutout on your social networks. 

Integrate a referral program in your marketing strategy and see how much more interested people become in recommending your brand when they will get something nice for themselves.  

Guest content 

Another way to reach a broader audience is to collaborate with popular blogs. If you consider yourself an expert in your industry, you can share your knowledge and experience with others. Provided you really have unique insights and solutions to popular ussies, most blog publishers will be happy to accept your research and post it. 

Infographics & Videos 

As noted above, brand imagery plays a huge role in brand recognition. And when you have top-notch illustrations and videos on your social media or website, it creates a better impression. 

You will need reliable tools for creating those spectacular banners, infographics, and promotional videos. Services like Canva and Fastreel Video Editor can help you tackle any multimedia-related task.  

Freebies 

Let’s face it: everyone loves a good freebie. You can add little presents to customers’ orders right in the shopping cart or organize contests on social media. The items you give away can also vary: it might be a supplementary product or service, a free copy, or branded merchandise. 

Merchandise 

Speaking of merchandise, it’s another very effective way to attract customers. When people wear hoodies with your logo, they literally turn into a walking advertisement and logo recognition for your company. Provide your staff with branded notebooks, accessories, and t-shirts, and don’t forget about your clients too. You can sell the merchandise or give it as a prize in contests.

Blogs & podcasts

Instead of creating content for other sites, you can invest in promoting your own blog. Share your expertise in the form of text or opt for an audio format and create a podcast. The most important tips here are to be consistent and provide valuable information. By doing this, you can prove your value as an expert and win more potential customers. 

Influencers 

One of the most popular words in marketing today is “influencers.” These are people who have earned the trust of internet users and very often act as brand ambassadors. Having an internet celebrity on your side is beneficial for both your brand and the influencer. However, you should consider the potential risks of such a collaboration:

●       No one likes in-your-face promotion, and you may get negative feedback from an influencer’s followers.

●       If an influencer compromises themselves in any way, your reputation may suffer, too, as their name will be connected to your brand. 

HR brand 

Another important side of brand promotion is being the object of desire for job-seekers. Building a strong HR brand is crucial for attracting the best employees, so you need to take care of the way you look as an employer. 

Build up your reputation on LinkedIn, as well as on other social media and recruiting platforms, be true to the values you advocate, and create a friendly environment among your team members to support this aspect. 

SEO research 

How people search for you online also adds up to brand awareness. Do you rank in the top 3 for popular queries? Do people spell your brand properly? Brands with uncommon spellings (eg. Yore Oyster) will dominate the search results for that specific keyword, so it can be an effective strategy for increasing relevance. 

Tools like Ahrefs and Semrush give you access to lots of data related to keyword research. They show you which keywords bring your site the most traffic and which ones you are missing. You can use this information to optimize your pages to rank higher and become more recognizable.

Advertising 

Investing in pay-per-click advertising is a great idea. You can start a campaign in Google Ads and monitor its performance. The right combination of keywords will guarantee you the place above the organic search results and increase brand awareness. 

4. How to measure the success of a brand strategy

Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are quantifiable metrics that give businesses an idea of how successful they are in reaching specific business goals. Typically, your KPIs will consist of things like profit and loss, customer satisfaction, and return on investment. 

With these numbers, you will be able to monitor your progress towards achieving your goals. When it comes to brand awareness, here are some of the factors and numbers you should consider:

●       page views and impressions

●       social shares and mentions

●       conversions and sales

5. Potential risks and issues 

Many brands have faced issues with their promotional strategies. The wrong move at the wrong time – and your reputation is ruined, sometimes, forever. Let’s take a closer look at what could happen during your branding campaign. 

a. Inappropriate jokes 

Think twice before posting (and reposting!) any joke online. You may offend somebody unintentionally and flop your whole campaign with an inappropriate tweet or post. 

b. Misinterpretation 

Consider all of your slogans and storytelling items carefully. Do they sound ambiguous? There is nothing wrong with ambiguity and puns unless your words, again, offend people. 

c. False advertising 

Nothing infuriates a customer more than being lied to. Claiming your product does something when it clearly doesn’t won’t do you any good and is illegal in many places. 

d. Insufficient research

Are you sure your brand name sounds appropriate in a non-English-speaking country? Living in a multicultural world, it may be hard to keep up with all the nuances, but you should devote enough time to research how your brand may sound in other languages, especially in the countries you’re promoting your products. 

The urban legend they teach you at a marketing class says that Colgate faced an obstacle when advertising in Spain because the name “Colgate” sounds like an imperative “Hang yourself” in Spanish. That’s not exactly right. The correct version is written as CUEL-ga-te; however, the verb “to hang” actually resembles the infinitive “colgar,” thus maybe creating confusion for people.

6. Checklist 

Let’s summarize everything we’ve discussed so far. You can use this checklist before launching your next campaign: 

  1. Convey your message to your brand in the best way.
  2. Decide what imagery will work best.
  3. Consider the channels you will use for promotion.
  4. Find the tools that will help you achieve your goals: services for content creation, analytics, research, and more.
  5. Appoint a person or a team who will be in charge of the digital campaign.
  6. Brainstorm ideas for corporate merchandise.
  7. Do a cost-benefit analysis.
  8. Consider potential issues and solutions.
  9. Use cohesive storytelling.
  10. Transmit core values throughout the whole campaign. 

In closing 

We’ve analyzed the most important aspects of increasing brand awareness. The road to the top is not short, but hard work and smart promotion will definitely pay off. Knowing how to build a brand is essential if you want your business to succeed in the ever-expanding and competitive market. 

But remember, no brand promotion will work if you produce low-quality products or provide unreliable services. Make sure your business is constantly improving the quality of your offerings, and your investment won’t go to waste.

Victoria is a content-manager in Movavi. She specializes in writing user-friendly content and researching complex topics to make them easy to understand in her articles.

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