Why your business needs a brand strategy

3 minute read

You’re making important decisions every day in every area of your business, and you want to make sure that they are strategic, efficient and effective.

Yet we meet many business leaders who tell us that marketing decisions take up too much of their time (and budget) for uncertain return.

Whether you’re running your own marketing or managing a marketing team, it’s a red flag if you’re preoccupied with questions like:

  • What should our website look like?
  • How should I phrase the copy on this brochure?
  • What kind of things should I include in my enewsletter?
  • What sort of events should my business sponsor?
  • Should we use memes, gifs and emojis on social media?

If this rings true for you, you need a brand strategy.

Two colleagues trying to solve a business problem

What is a brand strategy?

To explain brand strategy, we first have to define what a brand is.

Your brand is the overall impression that people have of your business.

People form their impression of your business based on their experiences of how it behaves, looks and sounds. So a brand strategy is your plan to create a strong, positive, lasting impression of your business in your stakeholders’ minds.

Your brand strategy establishes:

  • the specific impression you want to make, and
  • how your business will behave, look and sound in order to make that impression.

A robust brand strategy should have two parts:

  1. First, the foundational thinking that forms the core of the brand. At LOCK, we call this the brand platform, and it consists of the following elements: vision, mission, values, personality, positioning statement and key messages.
  2. Second, the guidelines that establish how the brand platform is expressed externally to stakeholders. At LOCK, we call this the brand identity. This is composed of a visual and verbal identity, which respectively set out how the brand looks and sounds.

How can a brand strategy help you?

Today, most people understand the power of brands. Strong brands generate long-term value for businesses by differentiating from the competition and attracting and retaining customers. Businesses create strong brands by executing robust brand strategies.

However, few people realise that a good brand strategy also makes daily decision-making quicker, simpler and easier, helping your business run more effectively.

A framework for your design, messaging, and marketing decisions

Once you’ve established the impression you want to make in your customers’ minds, and you’ve decided how you will behave, look and sound in order to achieve this, you have a clear framework that directs your choice of marketing tactics.

Two colleagues working with extra time and money

Let’s take another look at the questions above as a rough example of how this works in practice:

  • To decide what your website should look like, refer to your visual identity.
  • To decide how to phrase the copy for your leaflet, refer to your verbal identity.
  • To decide what to include in your enewsletter, refer to your key messages.
  • To decide what events to sponsor, make sure your choices are in line with your values and brand positioning.
  • To decide whether to use memes, gifs and emojis on social media, refer to your brand personality.

Maximise brand value in all areas of your business

Bear in mind that non-marketing decisions can also impact your stakeholders’ impressions of your business. So, in order to maximise the potential value of your brand, you should refer to your brand strategy when making these decisions.

For example, if one of your brand values is ‘simplicity’, and your finance team is currently considering switching to a new customer payment system. By referring to the brand strategy, your team will know that their chosen system must provide a straightforward, easy experience for your customers in order to strengthen your business’ brand.

Delegate decisions with confidence

By sharing your brand strategy with your employees, you empower them to make effective strategic decisions about the tactics they use. Your brand strategy will help you delegate tactical decisions to your team confidently, and therefore save time, money and energy.

The takeaway

A good brand strategy will make your daily decision-making quicker, simpler and easier, as well as help to generate long-term value for your business.

Find out more about how we can help you develop a robust Brand Strategy.