Your brand identity is what makes you instantly recognisable to your customers. It’s a living, breathing thing, which means it’s constantly changing. It’s susceptible to external factors like news, trends, and current events.
Your brand identity also forges the connection between you and your customers. The colour codes, brand voice and strategies you choose all affect customer loyalty and determine how you will be perceived by the outside world.
Most companies would agree that branding is a crucial element of modern business. Yet brand management is not always a priority and that branding often falls to someone in marketing, who is already balancing other tasks.
The question to consider is this. Is your business dedicating enough time to its brand?
The paradox of brand management
Regardless of size and resources, a brand is increasingly becoming one of modern businesses’ most valuable assets. In fact, a study by Millward Brown found that strong brands sold significantly more, and could charge a higher price premium, than weaker competitors.
And yet, without focus and planning, managing a brand quickly becomes a challenge – leaking value and undermining efforts across the business. Even with the best intentions, a brand can easily become scattered and inconsistent, especially when a clear brand voice or brand guidelines are lacking.
Take control of your brand
In a digital world, your brand is constantly in the spotlight. Brand management gives you the tools to take control, ensuring that on social media, in customer communications, and in digital and physical campaigns, your brand voice and brand style are always clear.
With a little effort and investment up front, you’ll ensure that graphic designers, marketing teams and the rest of your organisation have everything they need to execute clear branding strategies. All while communicating value and building loyal relationships with your followers, fans, and customers.
Create branding guidelines
You won’t get anywhere without a clear and coherent brand book. This should effortlessly communicate your company values and goals. Leave no stone unturned. The best brands integrate their brand voice, colour palette, and brand style in ways that are unique and instantly recognisable.
But more than this, effective brand management needs a brand strategy, a plan, and rules – and, more importantly you need to stick to them. Simple? Not really.
In the 2021 State of Brand Consistency report by Lucidpress, 85% of organisations said they had brand guidelines, but only 31% said they are consistently enforced. This gap suggests that while branding intentions may be good, appropriate time and resources are not being devoted to seeing them through.
Even with a strong brand identity established, you need to be certain your colleagues stick to it – even when they’re busy or judgement lapses. Clear brand guidelines are a must here. They will ensure that confusion and mistakes are minimised, and that your company is constantly showing beautiful brand assets to customers.
Digital brand guides connect your brand with your employees
Another thing to consider – make sure your brand guidelines cover internal branding. Your colleagues are your biggest brand ambassadors. If they are not onboard or up-to-date with your brand strategy, you can expect a struggle to get it right.
It is crucial to ensure your colleagues know their role in your brand strategy and how important they are to its success. Equally important is making sure they can find the brand assets and guidelines they need, without waiting for you to check your email.
By creating digital brand guidelines, your brand will be available, 24/7. Make sure to connect your rules to existing brand assets, establishing a style guide that everyone understands.
Craft efficient and dynamic workflows
Today’s marketing is dynamic. You should aim to avoid bottlenecks by ensuring you have the proper tools in place. Your goal is to create seamless workflows, enabling fast and efficient brand management.
A brand management system allows easy access to your digital assets, templates and information, resulting in smooth, self-service operations. Communication is streamlined, waiting times are minimised, and everyone can enjoy devoting their time to valuable, long-term activities instead.
Create trust in your brand
The information and brand assets you provide your colleagues should never be out-of-date. If materials that are no longer valid remain in use, your brand will quickly suffer. It’s embarrassing, it’s unprofessional, and it undermines your customers’ trust.
Fortunately, with digital brand guidelines, this risk is minimised. A good brand management platform allows you to instantly publish updates to brand assets and guidelines, sharing them enterprise-wide in a matter of moments.
If you want to learn more about establishing brand guidelines for long-term success, check out how Papirfly’s all-in-one brand management platform can help you achieve this.