A strong brand differentiates your company from competitors, conveys the highest value you deliver, and serves as an implicit promise to your clients of what your organization stands for.
But what’s the difference between a good brand and a truly great one? In continuation of the last post, here are three more factors that separate the best brands from the rest, and examples of marketers who are using these factors to set the bar for branding success.
- Consistency: The customer’s experience is consistent every time they encounter the brand, whether it’s in advertising, a retail store, face-to-face with an employee, or using the product. Disney is the master of brand consistency in entertainment, Nordstrom in retailing. You know exactly what to expect from these marketers because you almost always receive it.
- A distinctive voice: The brand has a point of view, attitude, or persona that comes through to the customer in everything the marketer does. This point of view is so well-defined that the customer can recognize it even when the brand logo isn’t present. You don’t need to see the logo to know you’re watching a Victoria’s Secret ad, reading their direct mail catalog, shopping in their store, or wearing their clothes.
- Intimacy with the customer: The customer feels they have a relationship with the marketer; the marketer knows them and knows what they like. Amazon.com customizes messaging and product selection at every step of online shopping to make you feel they actually know you. Starbucks customers and baristas share a private language where words like skinny, tall, and a double shot have a special meaning; baristas often remember customers’ favorite drinks.
Any company can use these same factors to create a unique, memorable and meaningful identity that establishes an effective presence in the marketplace.
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Jean M. Gianfagna is a marketing strategy expert and the founder and president of Gianfagna Strategic Marketing which provides marketing strategy and creative services to leading business-to-business and consumer marketers. Read her blog for more marketing tips at http://www.gianfagnamarketing.com/blog.