The short answer: yes. The long answer: your brand strategy should constantly be evolving and adapting to the needs and demands of your target audience and customers. A strong brand strategy will stand the test of time, but a stagnant brand will fall short. Do you know how to approach your brand strategy updates? Let’s get into the basics.
Identifying Your Current Audience
Getting a clear understanding of who your current target audience is the first step in evolving your brand strategy. Your target audience may be different than it was when you first launched your brand. How can you tell? Through the data. Data analytics can be a vital tool when it comes to updating your band strategy. You can gain insight into who is buying your products or services, where they are buying, how often they buy, and more. Data analytics gives you access to information about your customers to better meet their needs with a brand strategy that works. A few questions to ask yourself when identifying your current audience:
- What need do I meet?
- Who has a need for my products/services?
- Are there any competitors?
You may be wondering, where do my competitors come in? The competition has the potential to take your customers at any given moment, and vice versa. Using data analytics to evaluate your competitors will give you even more insight into your current audience and their thought processes when purchasing. This data can be helpful in identifying needs you are not currently meeting for your customers as well. Before you can do anything else with your brand strategy, you must know who you are targeting.
Your competitors have the potential to make or break your brand’s success. If you outperform the competition, you will be the preferred brand for your customers. At the same time, if the competition outdoes you, your brand will see a decline. Understanding your competitors, both direct and indirect, will help you foresee what brand strategy changes and adaptations are needed to stay at the top of your industry.
Direct competitors are those who exist in your specific market, with very similar products or services to offer. They are often the first alternative choice for your customers. Look at their brand and what they do, and then do better. Look at how they advertise and market themselves. Is it cohesive? Does it have a distinct look and feel? Then ask yourself, how can I do that but better? Revisit your brand strategy and look at how you approach your customers. You have already done the work to identify your current target audience, now look at what the competition offers that you do not. Then, determine how you can “fill in the gaps” with an alternative product or service that boasts a unique selling proposition they cannot refuse.
Indirect competitors are those who exist in your industry, and they solve a similar customer need, but in a different way than your own. The transportation industry is often filled with indirect competitors for example, they all fulfill customers’ needs for getting products and orders from point A to point B but in different ways. They compete for customers, but not directly; a customer looking for air transportation is likely not going to opt for ground shipping if they need to ship overseas. However, on any given day the roles could reverse. The best way to combat indirect competition with your brand strategy is to position yourself in a way they cannot ignore. You cannot simply be the cheapest or the longest lasting, but rather all that and more. You should be changing your brand strategy to account for both direct and indirect competitors and their potential for “poaching” your customers.
Why Brand Evolution is Important
Evolving your brand strategy is incredibly important if you want to stay in business. Having a stagnant, irrelevant brand will do more harm to your business than you can imagine. Research has shown that 14% of businesses fail due to bad branding and marketing. Your brand is everything to your business. It is your bread and butter, the foundation that your entire business stands upon. Your core values, while somewhat constant, should have room for flexibility. For example, what was once “transparency” can evolve to “collaborative customer relationships.” They convey the same message, but one is more specific and distinct. Your brand strategy can change without being too drastic. You can update your logo without changing the general concept, just polishing it up with a modern look and feel. The same goes for every other aspect of your brand, if it is currently successful you can update it without changing the entire concept. As for the less than successful components of your brand strategy, you must identify how to relieve the issue while still maintaining a cohesive look and feel. Evolving your brand strategy will only be as successful as you make it, and using data analytics and audience feedback will help you ensure you make the right decisions.
Don’t Stick with Trial and Error
While trial and error can be a great way to yield data, it is by far not the most productive or efficient. We have already discussed the importance of data analytics when it comes to updating your brand strategy, and you should not forget it. Take note of all potential ways you can yield data and prepare to integrate your findings into your strategy. If data analytics, branding, customer experience, and more are not your forte that does not mean you are out of luck. Professional branding firms are well versed in creating brand strategies that are adaptable and successful for the long run. Before you choose the right branding firm for your business, take the time to meet with their team and ask the necessary questions to see if they can meet your needs. An experienced firm that specializes in brand strategies like Millennium Agency will have the tools and background to take your brand to the top.
About Millennium Agency
Millennium Agency is a nationally recognized, top woman led B2B branding, positioning, and digital marketing firm who creates value that builds emotionally impactful brands that influences your customer’s buying decision, giving you the competitive advantage. As your industry partner for B2B pharma/biotech, technology and manufacturing, our proprietary research-based framework makes a strong impact and accelerates your brand growth. While you focus on what you do best – running your business successfully – our team will build your brand, and drive leads. For more information, call 877-873-7445 or schedule time here.