In today's competitive business landscape, building and maintaining a strong brand acts as the foundation for success. This is because it helps establish a unique identity and personality for a business which makes it identifiable. This, in turn, can differentiate the brand from competitors, improve recall and build customer loyalty, and ultimately drive business success.
But what exactly goes into brand marketing? How do you create a successful brand strategy and execute it effectively?
In this complete guide, we'll cover the top 9 elements of brand marketing that every business should know. From brand purpose and identity to audience targeting and campaign goals, these are the key components that will help you build a powerful and differentiated brand.
Top elements of brand marketing
Here are the key elements of brand marketing you need to be aware of:
1. Brand purpose
Brand purpose is the reason a brand exists beyond just making money. It is the brand's reason for being, and it should be meaningful, authentic, and inspiring. A strong brand purpose helps to guide all aspects of the brand's business and marketing, and it can be a powerful differentiator in a crowded and competitive market.
For example, a brand that is focused on sustainability and environmental responsibility might use its brand purpose to guide its product development, sourcing, and packaging decisions, as well as its marketing messages and campaigns. This brand purpose could set it apart from competitors and appeal to a particular target audience who values sustainability.
Apart from differentiating a brand and appealing to a specific target audience, a strong brand purpose can also build customer loyalty and trust. Customers are more likely to be loyal to brands that they believe in and that align with their own values. A clear and authentic brand purpose can also inspire employees and create a sense of purpose and motivation within the organization. Take Dove as an example.
In all their campaigns and products, they promote self-care over beauty. Their brand purpose is to inspire self-confidence over anxiety over how one looks.
2. Brand vision
Brand vision is a long-term, aspirational statement that outlines the brand's goals and what it wants to achieve. It is a way of looking forward and defining what the brand wants to become, and it should be inspiring, ambitious, and forward-looking.
A strong brand vision can serve as a guiding light for all aspects of the brand's business and marketing efforts. It can focus the brand's efforts and ensure that all decisions align with its long-term goals. A brand vision can also inspire employees and create a sense of purpose and motivation within the organization.
In terms of brand marketing, a clear and compelling brand vision can differentiate the brand from competitors and appeal to a specific target audience. For example, a brand that has a vision of becoming the world's most sustainable fashion brand might use this vision to guide its product development, sourcing, and marketing messages like Levi’s does. It could appeal to a target audience that values sustainability.
A brand vision can also build customer loyalty and trust. Customers are more likely to be loyal to brands that they believe in and that align with their own values. By clearly communicating its brand vision, a brand can show customers what it stands for and what it is working towards, which can inspire trust and loyalty.
3. Brand values
Brand values are the core principles and beliefs that guide a brand's actions and decisions. They are the foundation of a brand's identity and personality, and they should be authentic, consistent, and meaningful. A strong set of brand values helps to define the brand's character and differentiate it from competitors.
With regard to brand marketing, brand values can affect everything from the messaging and content that the brand produces to how it interacts with customers. For example, Tesla values innovation, learning, and risk-taking and uses it as a guide for development and design decisions, as well as its marketing messages. This could appeal to a target audience that values novelty.
Besides differentiating a brand and appealing to a specific target audience, brand values can also build customer loyalty and trust. Customers are more likely to be loyal to brands that they believe in and that align with their own values. A clear and authentic set of brand values can also inspire employees and create a sense of purpose and motivation within the organization.
4. Brand promise
A brand promise is the specific, tangible benefits that a brand offers to its customers. It is a way of communicating the value that the brand provides, and it should be relevant, distinct, and compelling. A strong brand promise helps to establish customer expectations and build trust and loyalty.
In brand marketing, a clear and compelling brand promise can be a powerful differentiator and can help attract and retain customers. For example, a brand that promises to deliver the highest-quality products might use this promise to differentiate itself from competitors and appeal to a target audience that values quality.
However, it's important for a brand to deliver on its promise consistently to build and maintain trust with customers. If a brand makes a promise and doesn't follow through, it can damage the brand's reputation and discourage customer loyalty.
5. Brand identity
Brand identity is the visual elements that make up a brand, including its name, logo, color scheme, typography, and more. It is the way that a brand presents itself to the world, and it should be consistent, distinctive, and memorable. A strong brand identity helps establish the brand's personality and makes it known in contrast to similar businesses in the niche.
In regard to brand marketing, brand identity is crucial because it helps to create a cohesive and recognizable image for the brand. It can be used to create brand awareness and recognition, and it can also help establish an emotional connection with customers.
For example, a brand with a strong and memorable logo or color scheme might use these elements consistently across all of its marketing materials, ultimately creating a cohesive and recognizable image for the brand. Notion is a great example of this.
Brand identity is also important because it helps to communicate the brand's values, mission, and personality to customers. It can convey the brand's message and differentiate it from competitors. For example, a B2B brand that values simplicity and minimalism might use a sleek and modern brand identity in contrast to an FnB brand that won’t shy away from loud colours.
6. Brand positioning
Brand positioning is the specific place that a brand occupies in the minds of its target audience, based on its unique attributes and benefits. It is the way that a brand differentiates itself from competitors and establishes its place in the market. A well-defined brand positioning helps to clarify the brand's target audience and differentiate it from competitors.
Brand positioning is a crucial element of brand marketing because it guides all of the brand's marketing efforts and ensures they are relevant and effective. For example, a brand that positions itself as the highest-quality option in its market might use this positioning to guide its messaging, pricing, and marketing channels. This positioning can attract a target audience that values quality and differentiate the brand from competitors.
Brand positioning is also important because it helps to establish the brand's unique value proposition and messaging. The best example? Apple. Instead of focusing on their pricing, they sell luxury and innovation to their audience. Because of this, they have been able to create brand fanatics.
7. Audience targeting
Audience targeting is the process of identifying and focusing on a specific group of potential customers as the brand's target audience. It is a key element of brand marketing because it helps to ensure that the brand's marketing efforts are relevant and effective.
Effective audience targeting requires a deep understanding of the brand's target audience, including their needs, values, and behavior. This understanding can be gained through market research, customer data, and other sources. By knowing who the brand's target audience is, the brand can create marketing messages and campaigns that are tailored to this audience and that speak to their specific needs and interests.
Audience targeting is important because it helps to increase the effectiveness of marketing efforts and improve the return on investment. By targeting the right audience, a brand can reach the people who are most likely to be interested in its products and who are most likely to take action. This can increase conversions and drive business success. For example, Starbucks shares what its audience loves — aesthetic media, recipes, and influencer content.
8. Tone and voice
A brand's tone refers to the personality and character of the brand as conveyed through its messaging and content. It is the way that the brand expresses itself and interacts with its audience, and it should be consistent and appropriate for the brand's target audience.
A brand's voice, on the other hand, refers to the specific words and language that the brand uses to communicate. It is the way that the brand sounds, and it should be consistent with the brand's tone and appropriate for the brand's target audience.
Together, tone and voice establish the brand's identity and differentiate it from competitors. They can be used to create an emotional connection with the brand's audience and to communicate the brand's values and personality.
Tone and voice are essential elements of brand marketing because they create recognition and make an impact on the brand's audience. A consistent and appropriate tone and voice can improve brand recall and make a strong impression on the brand's audience. It can also build trust and establish an emotional connection with the audience.
For example, a brand with a friendly and approachable tone like Headspace might use this to create an emotional connection with its audience and build trust, while a brand with a professional and authoritative tone and voice might use it to establish credibility and expertise.
9. Brand awareness goals
Brand awareness refers to the degree to which a brand is recognized and remembered by its target audience. It is an important element of brand marketing because it helps to increase visibility and recognition for the brand, and it can drive business success.
To increase brand awareness, it is important for a brand to set specific brand awareness goals. These goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). By setting clear and measurable brand awareness goals, a brand can track its progress and adjust its strategy as needed to achieve these goals.
There are many benefits to increasing brand awareness. For example, it can increase web traffic by bringing more people to the brand's website. It can also expand the brand's audience by reaching new people who may not have heard of the brand before. Increasing brand awareness can also bring in leads and ultimately drive sales by making the brand more visible to potential customers.
Brand marketing is a complex and multifaceted discipline that requires a deep understanding of the brand's purpose, vision, values, promise, identity, positioning, target audience, tone and voice, and brand awareness goals.
By mastering these elements, businesses and individuals can build powerful and differentiated brands that stand out in the market and drive business success. If you're interested in learning more about brand marketing and how to create a successful brand strategy, we recommend joining Growth School's brand marketing course.
In this course, you'll learn from industry experts and get the tools and resources you need to build a strong and successful brand.