From cereals to fast food to software, companies that focus on their branding just do better. After all, they’re top of mind for target audiences. And that makes converting consumers to customers — and improving revenue streams by up to 23% compared to non-branded counterparts — much easier.
Yet you can’t let the market define your brand. Instead, you have to take charge of the way you present your corporate brand to the public, especially online. This requires a holistic effort to weave consistent branding throughout all your digital touchpoints from ad campaigns to social media posts.
Otherwise, you run the risk of sending mixed messages that weaken or confuse your brand positioning.
What are some practical and powerful ways to enhance your organization’s digital brand?
1. Launch branded nurturing campaigns
Let’s say a prospect is intrigued by the first glimpse of your brand. You can expect that the prospect may take up to six weeks to convert to a customer. During the interim, follow branding expert Erik Huberman’s advice and develop a branded nurturing campaign.
Erik Huberman, the CEO of Hawke Media and author of “The Hawke Method,” emphasizes in his principles of marketing that brand awareness and nurturing go hand in hand. Huberman cites Dollar Shave Club as an excellent branded nurturing example. One of Dollar Shave’s strategies was to drive focused, branded content to interested consumers from their first engagement.
Even after prospects converted to subscribers, they continued to be nurtured through branded content. Huberman stresses that this led to a branding-nurturing-trust foundation that catapulted the relatively unknown company to success.
To enjoy this kind of high-level branded engagement with your own target audience, consider opportunities for engagement. Start at the top of your funnel and work your way down. You may find plenty of areas for branded nurturing content like emails, texts, special offers, new products, or announcements.
2. Ensure your employees’ digital communications are branded
One of the fastest ways to lose digital brand alignment is to give your employees carte blanche when it comes to sending communications. For instance, let’s say your brand has an air of sophistication and polish. Your clients are high-end and accustomed to paying more for a refined, premium service experience.
Now, pretend one of your newest customer service team members has a tendency to send emails that don’t live up to your brand. They haven’t been edited. The grammar is incorrect. They’re full of emojis and text “shorthand.” Plus, the signature line doesn’t look like anyone else’s at your organization. In other words, the branding is completely off — which could become a customer turnoff.
Your employees represent your brand in everything they digitally say and do. It’s up to you to teach them how to honor your branding so they can be exceptional brand ambassadors. Scott Klinger, EarthLink’s senior vice president of Human Resources and Marketing, recommends creating and sharing brand guidelines as an excellent starting point. That way, your team will have a framework to work within.
3. Revitalize the branding of your social media accounts
Over time, your social media business pages can lose their cohesive quality. This, in turn, can lead them to look cluttered, uninspired and unbranded. It can also give them a dated appearance that may turn off trendier consumers.
Spend some time looking at your social media accounts from a macro perspective. Is your corporate branding loud and clear? Are there any gaps? Look for lapses in your branding. Then, start to clean up your account. Take your time, though. You don’t want to tear apart your social pages too much. Just archive or delete posts that no longer seem relevant after reflecting on your branding goals.
For future posts, look to inspiration from companies leading the social media branding landscape like Slack, Shopify and GoPro. You don’t want to copy them. Nevertheless, learn from what they do that keeps people coming back for more.
Mastering online brand awareness takes time and patience. Once you start getting momentum, however, you should see a direct correlation in your buyer conversions, retentions and re-purchases. That’s when you’ll know that you’ve hit upon a digital branding recipe that’s worth repeating.
Rashan Dixon is a senior business systems analyst at Microsoft, entrepreneur and a writer for various marketing and business publications.
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