Having a strong brand is one of the most important elements of any successful eCommerce business. With more than 305 million startups launching each year, your brand helps you stand out from the crowd. So what makes a brand strong? And how can you achieve this? Let’s take a look.
What Is A Brand?
A brand is a strong concept that gives your business identity. It’s what helps customers to identify you. It’s displays your companies values and ideas through features such as:
- Color schemes
- Domain names
- Unique products
- Excellent services
Why Build A Brand?
Without a brand, shoppers may not be able to distinguish you from any of the other competitors selling similar products. In an already saturated market, having a brand makes all the difference.
If you provide them with a positive customer experience, they will remember key features about your brand that will drive them back again. It helps to create a good reputation, build a sense of trust, and even create an emotional connection with shoppers.
At a time when shoppers want to spend their money in alignment with their values, brands are a great way of achieving this.
When brands are very successful, such as Prada (fashion), Apple (electronics), Starbucks (coffee) or Mercedes (vehicles); the brand name itself becomes the reason people shop there.
How To Create A Strong Brand
So we’ve seen what a brand is, and why it’s important. But creating an effective brand can be difficult. The pressure to create something memorable can be a lot, and certain important things can be overlooked. Let’s take a look at some tips.
Know Your Market
Auditing the marketplace is a great first step for creating the brand. Look at your competitors and what they are doing. You want to find something that is similar to their take, but with your own twist. Don’t do what’s been done before, but do check what has worked for others.
Find a suitable number of competitors to look at. Look at enough that you have a broad idea, but not so few that you just see mirror images. See how each of these brands relate to their audience segment target market.
Ask yourself: what would make my brand stand out from this crowd? Then try to create that.
Making creative decisions can be really hard. There is never a ‘finished’ or ‘end point’ when it comes to artistic and creative choices. At some stage you just need to give yourself a deadline and say that whatever you have at this stage will be enough. Otherwise you could feel as though there are always more revisions to make.
If you have a creative team, then trust them and trust the process. If you are creative yourself, have faith in yourself. Set objectives that need to be accomplished by certain days, and give yourself the freedom and restraint to find the most satisfying balance.
Your brand needs to be developed and holistic. A shallow brand will signal inauthenticity to the customers. You need to think about your brand holistically; what is its personality? Try asking the following questions:
- What problem are you solving?
- What’s the sexiest trait about your business?
- Who would your company be if it was a person?
- What’s the best and worst thing about your business?
- Why would someone be interested, or not be interested in your business?
Digging a little bit deeper will help create the depth that you want customers to pick up on. It will also help you have more understanding and faith in your brand. This means you will be more passionate about the brand.
Create A Manifesto
A brand manifesto lays down what you stand for, what you believe in, and what you are trying to achieve. This could be sustainability or inclusivity, any other charity missions, passionate topics related to your specific product or service. Putting this on your site is a great way of making the customers clear about what your brand is.
Keep It Aligned
Whatever your brand image is, make sure it remains in alignment throughout your business. Certain color themes will make you stand out, as well as certain phrasing and images. Make sure that you keep this up. Consistency and reliability are something that shoppers strongly relate to.
Choosing distinct colors, symbols or words is a great way to create a strong brand. Something that is unique will more likely stick in people’s heads. This could even be something slightly out of the ordinary. You want to be remembered.
High Quality Content
All of the content that you use on your website should be of a high quality. The content and copy should be well written, interesting, appealing and unique to your business. The language should be to a high standard. If possible to have translations to other languages for a global audience, this should also be done.
Images should be high quality, with a theme. Using a diverse range of models is a great way to make people feel included. Social media should always be taken into consideration when creating the brand. Many shoppers, particularly younger ones will start by looking at social media to define what your brand is.
On social media you have the chance to excel. Fun content such as videos, quizzes and comedy is a great way to establish your brand. Competitions and engaging with your users, for example through user generated content, will prove your brand to be community driven.
Trust Your Brand
There might never be a point, when creating a brand, that it feels perfect. There are always things you could want to change and improve, but the important thing is to trust. Be passionate about what it is you are creating and believe in yourself. This is key to the brand’s strength: your backing.
In a saturated market, creating a brand is the first step to take. It can also be daunting, especially when considering the competition at your heels. But try and reframe the way you see it. Rather than being something daunting, creating a brand can be a passion project: fun and exciting. Follow these tips and let the rest take care of itself.