In an increasingly fast-paced and competitive business landscape, evolution is a key differentiator between brands that thrive and those that fall behind. So how do you drive growth and change for your brand? Here Simon Prince, Marketing Director at Powwownow, provides expert insight into the three key steps ahead.
As sectors evolve and companies’ offerings develop to adapt to consumer’s demands, their brand positioning and marketing should grow with them. But as a leader how do you recognise when the time is right to realign your marketing, or undergo a brand transformation? And, even more crucially, how can you effectively communicate these changes to new and existing customers?
Recognise a need for change
As a fast-growing company, knowing when to adjust your marketing or undertake a rebrand can come as a genuine challenge. However, by identifying trends in customer behaviour you can begin to anticipate wider market shifts and gain unique insights to help you effectively realign your messaging. Internal customer usage data, new registrations and purchasing trends can all act as useful signifiers of how effectively your existing marketing is resonating with your target audience.
Listening to your team, particularly those in customer facing roles, is important when it comes to sensing shifts in customer behaviour. It’s these team members who will be able to recognise changes in customer sentiment and flag any reoccurring complaints or pain points. Trusting your instinct is also key; as a leader in your industry you’ll already have an in-depth understanding of the wider market landscape which you can use to your advantage.
While creating new marketing campaigns is a smaller discussion, shifting your brand messaging is a bigger conversation that requires advocacy from the entire organisation. The question is knowing when the time is right to take a leap and transform your branding. Ultimately, if your data indicates consumer shifts, your team are engaged, and market trends are indicative of a need to evolve, the timing couldn’t be better.
Remain authentic to your core values
On a fundamental level a brand is a collection of core ideas and values, and it’s the role of the people shaping a new brand to act as custodians and translate these values into new messaging and actions. Being a credible, authentic, brand revolves around being authentic from within and remaining true to this core ethos during a branding transformation is crucial.
Ultimately, your intrinsic values are the pillars that your business relies on. An effective brand transformation isn’t about altering these values but adjusting your messaging to ensure that consumers can access your values more effectively. As your brand evolves you need to enlist people who understand and believe in your values, but who also have the objectivity to understand how to effectively reposition your messaging.
It’s important to remember when undergoing a brand transformation that you have a responsibility to your existing customers. They bought into the original concept and helped it to grow. Remaining sympathetic to this audience is crucial as it may take them time to come around to the new messaging or branding. However, as long as you remain true to your values they’ll come with you on that journey.
Communicate your new brand message
Repositioning your brand is a process that should start from within. Once you’ve created and tested your new identity, start to carry out brand training for employees and give them the chance to engage with new objectives and messaging. By reassuring them that the company’s vision hasn’t changed, only that it’s messaging has been simplified to reconnect with its audience and core values, they’re more likely to be advocates for the new messaging.
Educating your audience on your new messaging is also key – make sure to give them the opportunities to engage and connect with the new branding. Ultimately your customers should be at the heart of every decision you make, so make sure you create a messaging structure that they will be comfortable with.
Marketing your brand for change and growth is a delicate process that must be handled with care. From recognising when it’s time to take the brand in a new direction, to remaining authentic to your core values while translating them into a new vision, it’s important to bring both employees and existing customers on the journey with you. Though a long process, there’s no doubt that it’s essential for ensuring the longevity of your business.