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Transforming Brands to Endure

Build A Brand You Can Believe In

Minimize risk and spur growth with the right brand building tools

Brands today face myriad challenges, from pandemics to inflation to supply chain disruption and all points in between. In addition, there’s a feeling of unease amongst consumers, and they are looking to brands for familiarity and comfort. So gone are the days when all you needed was colorful packaging and a clever tagline to call yourself a brand. Consumer’s today want to know what a brand stands for, and that it aligns with their values. In other words, a brand you can believe in.

A brand you can believe in evokes strong emotions through clarity and consistency. It knows who its consumers are, what they want, understands the problems they face, and how to help solve those problems. A brand you can believe is also simple to understand, feels authentic, familiar and connects with consumers on a level deeper than most. In many ways, it feels like it understands you as a consumer and believes the same things you do – almost as if it were designed for you.

So how do you build a brand you can believe in?

Most marketers have similar tools in their branding toolkit, including brand positioning, brand differentiation, brand voice, brand values, and a few others. But to build a brand you can believe in, you need to go further than these basic components. Below are five key areas to focus on when making a brand you can believe in:

1: Understand your consumers’ behaviors

Understanding buyers can help brands connect with them and influence their behavior. This approach is critical in today’s competitive global market, and connecting on a personal level can mean the difference between sales and wasted marketing dollars.

2: Uncover relevant trends and innovations

Utilizing trends in manufacturing, packaging and marketing offer brands unique opportunities to enhance their brand and engage with consumers. And brands that are early adopters of innovation gain a competitive advantage, associating the brand with originality in the minds of consumers.

3: Set your brand up for success through brand strategy

A brand strategy is a combination of methods that help brands define their uniqueness and identity – improving the quality of communication across customer touchpoints, for a stronger brand and, ultimately, enhanced selling power. With a brand strategy that is both agile and responsive, it will continually add meaning to the perceived value of the brand.

4: Give your brand purpose and meaning through strategic brand design

By incorporating brand strategy into design, brands can create more meaningful experiences for consumers. Memorable brand elements foster greater recognition and connection, and this familiarity is the bedrock of building a brand you can believe in.

5: Create a clear and consistent message across all touchpoints

Consistent messaging repeated across all touchpoints is integral to building a strong brand identity and customer loyalty. Layering messaging across retail, online and other marketing channels creates multiple impressions of your brand and guides consumers through a seamless brand journey.

Today’s unprecedented climate offers unexpected opportunities to create a brand you can believe in. A brand that best understands their consumers and takes advantage of trends and innovations will have the tools it needs to navigate an ever-changing marketplace. And a brand that uses brand strategy to develop purposeful and memorable design across a variety of consumer touchpoints will build the meaningful connections that consumers seek out for a sense of stability.

– Matt Clemens

Matt Clemens is Founder & Managing Partner of Contrast, a Chicago-based brand design agency that believes big ideas come from small, highly specialized teams. Matt and his team know the brands that get the most attention are the ones that pay full attention to customer needs. So Contrast draws on its 30+ years of combined expertise to develop distinctive strategic brand design, from messaging and identity, to packaging and point-of-sale, to online and in-store activation, and beyond. And Contrast works closely with your team to develop breakthrough creative that defines, differentiates, and drives meaningful results for your business.

Matt Clemens will be appearing at the Velocity Conference happening in Charlotte, NC, May 16-18. For more info visit VelocityInstitute.org.