This is part two of our Branding Strategy series. In part one we talked with Dustin Stout and learned about Design, graphics, and conveying a consistent message across multiple networks.
This week, Dan Crask, co-owner of Brand Shepherd, stopped by the On Track Tips studio to talk about his favorite topic: Cross platform branding and how to maintain a consistent message at every consumer touch point.
It’s something about you and your business that is always evident. Anyone and everyone can see it, and they make quick, telling judgments based on it.
Your brand: Have you given it much thought lately?
If not, take few minutes to do some reflection on branding. It could pay off big time.
Brand Shepherd specializes in “omni-channel marketing,” says Dan Crask. He is proud to be a generalist.There is no shortage of great design talent available for hire, but without the right guidance, even the best design fails to persuade (Dan Crask).Click To Tweet
The purpose of branding
It’s critical for a business to tell the brand story persistently and persuasively. After all, your brand is your 24/7 personality. It’s your story. If you don’t have a story or a personality, why are you in business at all?
The biggest mistake in branding
Oftentimes, a business ends up getting too enmeshed with a specialist — someone who focuses on a specific part of the business (often, the website), and as a result puts all resources into just one specific piece of the marketing puzzle. This myopic approach prevents the translation of your message from concept to packaging. It diminishes the brand experience.You can't separate digital media from print media any more than you can your head from your shoulders.Click To Tweet
What is omni-channel branding?
Today’s marketer must be able to meet customers in a myriad of venues … radio, tv, print, internet ads, and social media. The visuals and voice must remain consistent across them all. You can’t separate digital media from print media any more than you can separate your head from your shoulders.
Even though the experience is different offline (on-shelf packaging, business cards, and shipping boxes) and online (website, newsletters, social media ads) they are all touchpoints of the same brand, and each one presents an opportunity to reinforce your brand identity and voice.
Branding tactics to consider:
- Get an honest assessment of where the brand REALLY is. Get opinions good and bad. Use interviews. Consider both online and offline branding. Look at your packaging, your displays, your business cards … be ruthless. It’s OK to talk with family and friends, but they are not professionals. This is one place in your business you cannot be cheap. Bottom line: Hire a professional branding consultant. Period.
- Use print in a smarter way. Print is not dead; it only got smarter. It doesn’t have to carry all the load any more, but it needs to remain an integral part of your marketing. Use it to compliment your online assets.
- Make sure your website is mobile responsive. It should conform to whichever screen encounters it.
- Make a list of everything you want to see on your branded touchpoints (logo, name, colors, slogan, motto, call to action, etc.) Make it consistent.
- Consider QR codes, apps, digital coupons and other offline / online bridges. Note, QR codes aren’t dead. They aren’t a huge bridge, but they’re definitely not dead.
Here’s some benefits of a responsive website
- Scalable – easy for developers to change
- Accommodates all screen sizes … phone to huge desktop monitor
- Allows you to meet your customers in the street.
- Google loves it and people love it
- Responsive sites provide an optimized experience no matter the size of the screen
And, finally … What is show-rooming?
Show-rooming is when people use local stores to view merchandise they plan on purchasing online.Show-rooming is not a threat ... it is an opportunity. Better branding can get items purchased NOW.Click To Tweet
Your brand is your company persona. It is the way you are perceived in the marketplace. If you were running for president, you would want every vote to go in the same bucket. That is why you want to keep a consistent, effective, recognizable persona. You want potential clients and customers to take note of your business and begin to say, “Yeah, I’ve heard of that company. I hear they are the best.”