Industry 06 . 08 . 20

Brand Strategy Consolidation: Why your Brand Needs a Backbone

By Abi Trotman | Studio Manager

Brand Strategy Consolidation: Why your Brand Needs a Backbone

We’ve had quite a few enquiries recently from long-standing businesses who have asked for brand ‘consolidation’. For those of you at the back, let’s take a look at what that word means.

consolidation

/kənˌsɒlɪˈdeɪʃ(ə)n/
noun

the action or process of making something stronger or more solid.

the action or process of combining several things into a single more effective or coherent whole.

A cursory google of ‘brand consolidation’ will show you articles on big businesses performing mergers; combining two or more brands from their portfolio into one in order to future-proof and cut costs.

But this isn’t what we’re looking at today – we want to talk about what these aforementioned enquiries have been asking us for. It’s an interesting phenomenon that is cropping up more and more; businesses wanting to ‘backfill’ their visual identity with the creation and strengthening of their mission, vision and purpose.

This is our definition of ‘brand consolidation’.

It made us realise that there are so many previously successful companies out there that have done well up to this point, but are now struggling to market successfully as they haven’t defined their brand strategy, and in turn, aligned their visual identity with their purpose.

These companies aren’t necessarily looking for a new logo or a complete rebrand, but they DO need help to define how they communicate with their target markets, and also to concisely convey why they’re there in the first place.

Breaking it down

Not having a fully defined brand strategy can lead to inconsistencies in a tone of voice, language and communication with the consumer, leading to confusion and even distrust.

You CAN go to market with just a logo, but you CAN’T market effectively or in any meaningful way without a solid brand strategy and sense of purpose.

Let’s put it this way – imagine going to a job interview and you look THE BUSINESS. You’re wearing your best clothes, you look the part and that, in turn, makes you feel super confident. But suddenly, the interviewer starts grilling you on ‘your purpose’. They want to know your why, what and how. They want to know that you’ve researched the best ways to communicate with them, so you make sense to them. Your looks alone aren’t going to get you this job, the interviewer wants to invest in a person that has passion, drive and integrity; a person that’s focussed on making their vision a reality, not just looking good.

Consumers are very much like that interviewer nowadays. Once upon a time, a ‘good-enough’ logo and a business card would have been enough to get you through the door, but to truly invest in your brand, consumers are now demanding so much more. The way you communicate is just as important as the way you look, and the only way to speak with your audience or target market effectively is to take a long, deep look at what you’re offering and why you’re offering it. Then, consolidate that so you’re able to relay it verbatim, every time you’re asked.

It’s been proven

Don’t just take our word for it – global communications agency Cone/Porter Novelli released a recent study on purpose that had the following keys findings:

66% of consumers are willing to switch from a known brand to an unknown Purpose-driven brand.

77% of consumers say they have stronger emotional bonds to Purpose-driven companies.

57% are willing to pay more for a like-for-like product if it’s from a Purpose-driven brand.

And finally,

89% of consumers believe Purpose is shown through how the company benefits society/the environment.

[Source: Cone/Porter Novelli Purpose Study]

And that doesn’t mean simply saying you’ll do something and then not following through with it – attaching a lofty goal or vision to your business and thinking that’ll be enough would be a massive mistake. Consumers need to see the impact made and they need to see consistency in your message to be able to believe in you. Practice what you preach.

So, where do we start with brand consolidation!?

Well, at designdough, when creating a brand, the strategy always comes first as it helps to shape the visual, ultimately producing a richer outcome. To lay out the strategy, we need to strip away the ‘day-to-day’ faff that gets in the way and really, truly ask ‘why do you do what you do?’. Past the money and the keeping a roof over yours and your families heads, why does your business exist? What are you offering and why are you offering it? What makes you different? A logo alone can’t convey the rich nuances in those answers, so we put together a set of guidelines that map out the language and messaging you need to best communicate your purpose. Market with honesty and heart, and you can’t go far wrong.

Ask yourself…

We’ll leave you with a few questions to get you thinking whether a brand consolidation is something you might need. If you answer NO to any of these, give us a call.

Do your customers know why you exist?
Do you give your customers a reason to choose you over your competitors?
When asked, are you and your team able to accurately and consistently communicate what the business does and why it exists?
Are you able to confidently and honestly communicate with your customers?
Do you know your company’s mission, vision and purpose?
Do you regularly perform competitor and market research/analysis to see how you differentiate?
Do you care about how your use of language and chosen communications could affect your brand’s success?

And there you have it, some quick food for thought on your brand that actually, could turn into major long-term success.

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