Branding Steps You Don’t Want To Miss in 2020

The importance of crafting a brand cannot be understated in 2020. Your brand consists of the visual and emotional cues that customers recognize your business by. It’s a collection of colors, fonts, and tone that tells the world what your business is all about.

To really hone in your branding in 2020, try these five steps to add clarity and consistency to your brand.

Create a Customer Avatar

One of the most important steps of building a brand is knowing who you’re speaking to. Take some time to outline your demographic or ideal customer. Ask yourself:

  • What gender are they?
  • How much money do they make?
  • What’s their family situation like?
  • What kind of career do they have?
  • What are their interests?
  • What are some challenges in their life?

Use the answers to this question to create a customer avatar. By adding a personality to your ideal customer, you have a simple reference point for crafting your message.

Craft Your Message

The next branding step is crafting your message based on the customer avatar you identified in your previous step. This exercise is ideal for nailing down the tone with which you want to address your ideal customers.

Craft your company’s mission statement, as well as your unique selling proposition (USP). Use this opportunity to tell your audience how you stand apart from the competition and how you can bring value to their lives. 

Conduct a Brand Audit

Conducting a brand audit is the best way to measure consistency across your various channels. During this process, you’ll go through each channel to evaluate the consistency and accuracy in regards to your brand.

When you do your brand audit, give yourself a rating scale to quantify your findings. You could rate your brand alignment on a scale of one to five or use a bronze, silver, and gold approach. Some common things to evaluate during your brand audit include:

  • Business name
  • Logo
  • Colors
  • Images
  • Visual designs
  • Website
  • Social media channels
  • Copywriting

Having this framework in place allows you to highlight and prioritize areas of improvement so that you can build a great online reputation.

Practice Social Listening

Social listening is an exercise that allows you to analyze how your audience perceives your brand. This exercise includes monitoring and building alerts so that you know what customers are saying about you, both directly and indirectly. 

Various tools can help with your social listening strategy. Using review management tools can help you track online reviews. Google alerts can identify if your brand has been mentioned in the media. Social media scheduling and analytic tools like Sprout and Hootsuite identify mentions across social media platforms.

Create a Brand Standards Document

Not everything is black and white when creating content that aligns with your brands— and sometimes, it’s not in color. There needs to be a certain amount of flexibility with how your logo and visual elements are construed. For example, if your color logo is being printed on a black and white document. Alternatively, if your black logo text is being printed against a black background. 

A brand standards document outlines the fonts, color codes, and variations that you allow when creating things related to your brand. It may show that you allow white font when it’s being printed on a black background or the grayscale version of your logo. 

Putting this information together in a booklet creates a quick reference point to ensure that all projects are aligned with the brand. It also helps to put together a digital version of your brand kit to be stored on the cloud for easy sharing.

By following these simple steps, you can create a stellar brand in 2020.

Drew Neisser