How to Build an Iconic Brand
In the ever-changing consumer market, where trends come and go, and market competition is becoming increasingly stiff - having an iconic brand is more than a perfectly designed logo placed above your shop entrance or featuring on your products.
Though a logo is a symbolic piece of the business, and the overall brand, it’s not the only thing that helps to drive customer retention and increase annual revenue.
Building an iconic brand means that a business creates a sense of authority within its marketplace, and allows it to amplify its value proposition.
If you have to think of all the iconic brands that exist today, you’ll notice how these companies have spent years and a seemingly endless amount of financial resources on developing a brand that is both unique and speaks directly to their clientele.
Though having a striking brand that leaves an impression is important, as it not only helps to establish a platform within a specific industry or marketplace through which the business can communicate with consumers – it’s also about creating an image that resonates with the business’s core identity.
In the ever-increasingly digital consumer world, brands are constantly looking for innovative ways that can help set them apart from their competition. For smaller enterprises that have both less market traction and physical resources to build an iconic brand, they must look to create social awareness by creating an emotional consumer connection.
So if a brand is more than its logo, how do you build an iconic brand in the modern age? Here’s a look at five industry secrets business owners can follow.
When building a new brand, it’s important to take a closer look at the business’ value perception in terms of what it offers to the consumer market, and how it plays a role within the value chain.
Additionally, companies should consider what their values are, and how they can shape that into the form of a physical expression. Often we can define a brand through its mission statement, as this already gives a clear idea of what the company wants to achieve and how they’re looking to do it.
The value perception speaks directly to what the brand will become in the near term. If a company is steadfast in delivering transparent results, then this should be included in its marketing and advertising strategies as it grows.
Ultimately, entities want to be recognized for the good and positive they bring to their clients and their direct community. And if we consider the value perception when building an iconic brand, we start to realize how important it is that core values play a vital role in the presence a business creates within the marketplace.
Modern-day consumer support brands they can resonate with, and this is true both in terms of the company’s practices and the physical brand it sells to these consumers.
Take for example Apple, although the company has seen some media backlash for not being innovative enough in recent years, consumers continue to buy their products. Apple has done what many companies aim to do, it has created an iconic brand that directly connects with its clientele. What this means is that the people who buy iPhones and AirPods feel more emotionally connected with the brand, as it’s become part of their human identity.
Creating an iconic brand should be about establishing a connection with consumers. A connection can be archived through creating personal experiences, or simply having a range of products and services that are tailored to a select audience. Though it’s impossible to be connected with every customer, it’s best to have a clear picture of how you can convey an emotional experience and how people will be able to resonate with that message.
Brand and corporate identity is often used interchangeably, and while they are closely related, they can mean something different when it comes to building a business brand.
Corporate identity in this case is about telling a story and sharing a sense of personality that the business brings to its industry. Identity can be found in several elements within the brand-building process, these include logos, the name, colour scheme, wording, customer service, and even the uniforms staff members wear. Identity is all about the physical appearance or image a business portrays to the public.
Take for example Chick-Fil-A, as part of its identity, aside from its products, is the fact that employees are taught to say “Thank You” after completing an order with every customer. It can be a tedious prospect to expect employees to always put their best smile on when working with hundreds of customers, but over time this has become part of their business identity and business model, which has made a lasting impression on customers.
Ultimately, identity boils down to the perception people have of the brand, and in the example of Chick-Fil-A, consumers enjoy not only their food options, but the staff and the entire identity the fast food chain carries throughout.
Know the audience
Long before a business comes to life, entrepreneurs and founders often conduct market research to see whether there is a need for their product or service. And while market research is a key component of building a strong business model, it also plays a crucial part in establishing an iconic brand.
Small businesses often start off designing a brand, whether it’s through their logos, interior, or packaging without first considering their target audience. An iconic brand that looks to outlive its founders will need to be designed with direct consumers in mind.
For example, baby products are designed to resonate with the early stages of parenthood, and companies spent millions of dollars in development to create a neutral, yet intriguing product campaign that is more targeted toward the parents than it is toward babies. Now consider a high-end luxury brand that sells expensive watches of couture, the design is the opposite because the audience members aren’t necessarily the same.
This ties in well with having to include a value proposition and creating an emotional connection with the customers. Some people often buy a product, not necessarily for the qualities it has, but for the name and brand itself, and how it adds value to their personality.
Researching the target audience beforehand will establish a clear and concise idea of how a brand should be designed and what important aspects should be included.
Finally, how one markets a business, whether it’s through social media, televised advertisements, radio blurbs, newspaper articles, or even through influencers – marketing helps to bring the brand and company directly to the customers.
Marketing a brand ensures that a business is not only visible within its direct consumer audience, but that it can reach farther than traditional means of business operations.
Additionally, marketing also helps business owners to understand the importance of consistency. And while consistency doesn’t feature elsewhere on this list, it’s still a prominent factor that needs to be considered when building a brand.
Not all brands communicate the same thing, and with this, they often don’t all market their products and services in the same way. One business will spend more money on social media ads because its audience uses these platforms more, while another only makes use of billboards and sponsorship media.
Marketing has a big part in what makes a brand unique and ultimately iconic. Without the right strategy or marketing plan, it will be a difficult venture to establish a brand that speaks to consumers in a memorable, yet emotional way.
Building an iconic brand only comes through time, effort, and a lot of changes. While it’s important to remain consistent once a brand has been established, keeping up with the time and trends will help keep the business relevant in a changing consumer market.
Not all companies will see their brands become a memorable piece of history, but for those that are working towards this achievement, it’s important to stay true to what the business has set out to do, and keep in mind that have a core mission will help set the brand apart from other competitors.