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Branding: Communicating Your Brand to the Public

When it comes to promoting your brand to customers and potential customers, consistency is key. If you’re repositioning your company with a new branded image, you need to communicate that to your existing customers in a way that encourages them to buy into the changes. In order to do this, you have to pinpoint the ways in which your new branding benefits your customers, and then communicate that value proposition.

When communicating your brand to potential customers – whether they’re visitors to your website, viewers of your advertisements, or recipients of your other marketing efforts, it’s critical to reinforce brand awareness every step of the way. For example, your existing website design and copy may be fantastic, but does it communicate the uniqueness of your brand? If not, it may be time to revamp it. Go back to logo, tagline, colors, and typography for the design, and work with your copywriters to infuse your branding message in the text. Change the “About Us” page, reposition product descriptions, and change other text to reflect your brand identity. The result should be cohesive, so that the visitor has no doubt as to who you are and what value proposition you bring to the table.

Similarly, rewrite any form letters, brochures, and other material to reflect your brand. Revise your directory listings. Revamp your online marketing campaigns. After all, if you’re giving your company a makeover and only go halfway, you’ll end up confusing your customers and potential customers.

Check back tomorrow, when we’ll discuss other ways to promote your brand.

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Branding: Internalizing Your Brand

Last week, we discussed three aspects of branding: selecting a company name that reflects your product and/or service, pinpointing differentiating factors to create a brand identity, and expressing your brand identity through visual identifiers like a logo, tagline, and typography. Today, we’re going to talk about one of the most overlooked aspects of branding: internalizing your brand.

Long before you start communicating your brand identity to the public and to your customers, every person in your company has to have a thorough understanding of your brand identity. How this happens depends upon the size of your company. If you’re a sole proprietor, don’t have any employees, and work from home, you might only need to print out a list of bullet points and tack it up on a bulletin board near your desk.

If you’re a small or medium-sized company, you might want to start by giving a presentation to your employees outlining your brand identity, and all of the points of contact (such as phone interaction with customers, company emails, letterhead, advertising, and media relations) where your brand identity will be expressed. From there, you will need to supply each employee with supporting documentation and all of the ancillary materials (logos, taglines, etc.) that he or she will need for their position within the company. It’s also a good idea to develop an orientation packet for new employees so that they can quickly come up to speed on your brand identity.

Your brand identity should also be a component of your employee hiring and retention strategies. One of the criteria you use to screen potential employees is how they can contribute to further your branding strategy. Similarly, employee performance evaluations should include an assessment of how successfully they are carrying out your branding strategy.

Tomorrow, we’ll discuss ways to communicate your brand to external audiences.

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