Brand consistency is as important as the brand itself. Having an awesome company brand framework is only the start of your journey, being able to apply this brand consistently on a daily basis can make or break a business.
As mentioned in one of our previous insight articles: ‘Why Branding is so important for your Business’, the brand of a company is so much more than just a logo, it is the essence of a business, it’s the way you communicate, the tone of voice and the type of messaging, the ethics and behaviour of your company and of course all of the visual aspects as well.
“A consistent experience, is a better experience.”
Having a robust brand strategy with guidelines in place to begin with is a great start, but what is brand consistency and how do you apply this?
Brand consistency covers all bases of your business and needs to be understood and applied in every interaction you have. It is when a company communicates via any medium or channel, in a way that does not detract from its core values, reputation or strategy.
Good consistency of your brand is basically not giving potential customers any reason to doubt you company’s capability or the credibility of your product or service.
Once those inconsistencies start to creep in, a potential customer is more than likely going to shop around or at worst never come back, even if they are 100% the right demographic for you and your business.
If you think of business opportunities or sales as a 100 metre hurdles race and the line-up of runners competing are all potential customers willing to win the race to buy from you. Every hurdle they come to is a doubt in their mind as to whether they should continue this journey with you in an effort to find the right company to do business with.
Every time a brand is inconsistent it is the equivalent of one of those runners (or your potential customers) hitting a hurdle and putting them further away from actually completing the race or transacting with you.
These doubts in a potential customers mind can come about in a number of ways during their interactions with you and your brand. It can be something as simple as a mismatch in what your brand stands for and what your brand is portraying or communicating.
Take as an example, if we took a well-known and very prestigious brand such as the Ritz Hotel chain, a brand that is synonymous with high-end quality and exquisite service and that service is known to come at a high price. If you turned up to the hotel for a long weekend, after paying a lot of money and you were not greeted at the front entrance, so had to lug your own bags in to reception, only then to be rudely spoken to by receptionist who is not helpful in the slightest.
You do not get the room with a sea view you requested, but are ushered to a room in the basement with no windows, as you enter you realise the room has not been cleaned and the bed is unmade.
Even at this point in the example you can see that the experience you would have had is totally out of kilter with what the Ritz Hotel chain stands for, so your experience of their brand is the polar opposite of what you were expecting.
On the basis of this one experience with the hotel, you would be certain to initially complain, but you’d be very unlikely to return again and would not be complimentary of the brand as a whole from that day forth. The same goes for every point in the lead up to a purchase or a transaction with a company, these inconsistencies are not helpful for the buyer or the business itself and ultimately and quite frequently can end the relationship.
There are many ways that you can apply your brand consistently, below are just a small selection of the key areas to address if you have not already:
It is essential that all visual elements of a brand are clearly defined and documented, preferably in a set of formal guidelines. This will ensure that no matter where or when your business is seen, it is done so in a manner that allows a potential customer to clearly associate them with your company. There will obviously be times that media and channels to market will differ, but by ensuring that meaningful links between areas such as colours, logos or icons, tag lines, tone of content, imagery and messaging are in place, this will guarantee that you retain peoples interest and breed familiarity.
Whether it be on or offline, communication needs to be done with some form of structure. An area often inconsistent within businesses communication can be something as simple as posting any old content up on the social media channels, all this does is erode what good work has been done in other areas for the company and usually eroding the brands identity on mass too, due to the thousands of followers watching it all play out. Just taking a bit of time to ensure that where possible, communication colours, logos, fonts, content, messaging and tone are all aligned will go a long way to cementing trust and confidence with people.
This area of a company’s brand is a very important aspect and can quite easily be overlooked. Your ethics are the way that your employees and business behave. It underpins your vision and mission statements and helps give some guidance to how internal and external parties should be treated and act. If there is no consistency in the way that people who interact with you and your business are treated, then this can be very confusing and will ultimately lead to a termination in communication.
Value vs Price
Making sure that everyone within your business understands your pricing model and the value associated with the products or services you provide is essential. If your business values itself on high-end services for a high price, a potential customer does not expect to receive low value services or interactions for their money. Being able to align your businesses brand messaging and value with the expectations of a customer is the cornerstone of a sustainable business model.
Here at Boostbery we have worked with thousands of brands and we understand exactly what is required to successfully build and execute a brand framework that delivers consistency, every time.
If you would like to discuss a your own brand or would like reach out to us and share your thoughts or need some advice on anything raised in this article, then please do get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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