How to avoid the extinction of your brand and remain relevant in the ever-changing business environment.
Presented by Toni O'Berry, the owner and founder of O'Berry Collaborative an esteemed branding agency.
"You can't enter a crowded market and then just do stuff like everyone else." - David Cancel, Drift
It's important to find a differentiating factor for your business, Toni breaks this down over the next few slides, however, focusing on your values and how they make you different from other companies in your space.
"Start by knowing what you want and who you are, build credibility around it and deliver it online in a compelling way." – Krista Neher
This is an incredible graphic that shows you the deeper pieces in which a brand is made up of and built upon.
Here's what these mean;
Creative Strategy: How are you going to come to market, what you're going to say, and the vernacular/visuals you're going to use.
Positioning: Specifically, what you have to offer and to whom and why you're unique.
Mission, Vision, and Purpose: Why you exist, what you want to accomplish, and achieve long term.
When thinking about how you're going to stand out, many companies turn to things that are simply expected in the market.
Characteristics like ease of use and customer service have become a must, the days of sending a candid reply without customization are now over.
Therefore, adapting to the motion of share values and innovations becoming the selling / differentiating factor have come to stay and further develop the way we strategize our business plans.
"Instead of focusing on the competition, focus on the customer." Scott Cook
Customer Advocacy is the higher tier of customer service. It's the involvement of the customers benefit while building your policy.
Whether this is delivering a customer bill-of-rights or making sure that the experience of onboarding is heavily personalized.
Specifically for JetBlue, they focused on customer experience, they understood the industry provides this expectation of a lesser experience whereas JetBlue broke away from that to surprise their customers.
“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” – Jeff Bezos, Amazon
A core part of distinction, being in line with your audience's shared values. Toms did an amazing job at this by tugging at their customer's heart strings and showing them that they can make a different by doing such a minute activity such as buying shoes.
At large, this draws at providing a mission that your customers can stick with, a brand promise that people want.
“Business has only two functions — marketing and innovation.” — Milan Kundera, Writer & Playwright
The mop has been around forever and people quietly hated it, however, it got the job done.
Swiffer saw this as a key area for reinvention, by taking away the manual process that mopping requires and making it more streamline, they quickly took the place of the traditional mop in everyone's utility closet.
Looking at the companies currently in your market by analyzing their website, customer experience, and the ease of use of their application.
By doing this, you can understand how others are currently capturing the attention of that market's customer base.
“Your brand is a story unfolding across all customer touch points.” — Jonah Sachs, Author
Your website is a keystone of the customer journey, providing information, ease of discovery, and sign-up process.
With a platform like Unstack you can quickly design a converting website that provides customers searching the information they need in order to be ready to convert.
“The most powerful person in the world is the storyteller. The storyteller sets the vision, values, and agenda of an entire generation that is to come.” — Steve Jobs, Co-Founder, Apple
Your brand's message is one of the first ways that customers identify and evaluate your brand.
As Toni goes over, the way you pose your brand should provide the benefits and features all within one concise message.
Toni O'Berry provides this by going over how she, when evaluating other businesses in the market, the utilization of a word cloud.
Doing this by collecting the brand messages of all the brands in that market then generating a word cloud so that you can further understand the verbiage that companies in your market are using.
Brand coloring has a major impact on your customer's perspective of your brand.
Psychology powers every part of the customer journey, so it's key to understand how the colors you're considering for your brand will impact the customer's impression of your brand.
“Branding is about signals — the signals people use to determine what you stand for as a brand. Signals create associations.” — Allen P. Adamson, Co-Founder, Metaforce
Transparency falls into a shared value, the example of CosMedicine who believed that truth was essential. They encouraged customers to read the ingredients, dispel myths, and more.
By doing so, they permitted for customer trust, customers being able to trust that what that brand is telling them is honest.
“Brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time.” — Elon Musk, Co-Founder & CEO, SpaceX
Many companies fall into multiple industries, looking at Drift as a new example, they entered the market of Live Chat and Site Engagement, rather than attempting to go at one of the already majorly full market, they built out and delivered their own named "Conversational Marketing."
“People will ignore or skip anything they don’t like. So brands have to start making things they love.” — Steve Pratt, Partner, Pacific Content
Markets aren't small, they break down into sub-markets. Finding your niche within the market is essential.
The best example is the skincare market, looking at stores like Sephora, they're now filled solely with Skincare products, however, each of a different sub-market.
“Instead of interrupting, work on attracting.” — Dharmesh Shah, CTO & Co-Founder, HubSpot
“It's not what you sell that matters as much as how you sell it!” — Brian Halligan, CEO & Co-Founder, HubSpot
Understanding the core principle of your company that makes it stand out among the masses is huge. Being able to narrow your scope into one focus is a key way to find your niche.
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