How to Avoid a Marketing and Branding Identity Crisis
Before leveraging your brand in lead generation campaigns, you must first determine how you want to be positioned within the mind of your target market, then monitor the ways you are actually perceived.Use the two simple but powerful questions below to get started, and use the results to create a consistent foundation, filter, and focus for all your future branding and marketing efforts.
- What do you want your company to be known for?
- When current and potential customers think of your company, what first comes to mind?
You’ll not only be amazed by the amount of valuable market intelligence you’ll find from these two simple inquiries, but by what is revealed about your target audience, and your management team as well.
What Is Your Company’s Intended Brand Identity?
Question number one serves three purposes, and is for your company’s upper management to answer.
- The first purpose is to unveil potential contrasts between a company’s brand vision and their market’s perception of it.
- The second purpose is to verify if a company’s leadership team shares a consistent vision.
- Lastly, this question shines a light on existing assets that are not in-line with the unified vision of who you want your company to be. With this information, you can see to the heart of a potential misalignment between your brand goals and a “this is the way we’ve always done it” mentality.
When the way management wants to be perceived by the market is consistent internally and with the target audience, the organization’s marketing is, more often than not, going in the right direction.
When an “identity crisis” stands between expectations and outcomes, this gap of enlightenment provides clues as to how a brand’s derailment could be put back on track.
How Does The Market Perceive Your Brand?
Question two is for your target market to answer.The accurate and positive perception of your brand is the primary goal of your marketing and branding efforts.Leveraging your brand’s strengths to drive leads based on that perception is a close second.
When posing a question to your target market about how they “see” and “feel” about your brand, it’s important for the query to be open-ended so respondents are free to express themselves without limitations. By doing so, you’ll learn as much by how things are stated, and omitted for that matter, as by what is expressed in free form. The words and phrases the respondents select could help you pick up on their sense of emotion, tone, intensity and other subtle but extremely valuable nuances. In aggregate, you might find themes, patterns, and similarities that could be as helpful in gaining deeper insight about how the market thinks, as in communicating with them using their own words.
Insight into your target market’s view of your business allows you to realign your marketing efforts and refocus your brand to match your corporate identity goals.
While it often requires some heavy lifting at the outset, this overhaul and recon on who your brand is internally and externally is a crucial check to ensure future growth. Findings based on your target’s feedback should be supported from your company’s market strategy through execution then applied across all touch points.With these discoveries, your marketing and branding efforts will resonate, connect and convert at a higher rate.