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The Importance of Brand Values

The Importance of Brand Values

The-Importance-of-Brand-Values

Having a ‘Brand’ is more than just a logo or a slogan – the term encapsulates the entirety of your business and influences how customers perceive you. The way you handle your brand image is vital in determining opinion and gaining market leadership. Your brand values are the foundation on which your brand is built.

Your Brand Values are essentially what you have decided as goals, methods of interaction, the way in which you express yourself, and the ‘voice’ of your business. It is essential that you have a strategy in place for promoting these values to ensure optimal reach and positive exposure. Your customers will want to know who your business is, what your company stands for – and what position (if any) it takes on wider social issues; these are all matters that your brand values need to address.

In their study, MediaCom found that, ‘40% of consumers have abandoned a brand because of poor values’
This is a huge potential loss to a business, and highlights just how important your brand values are, and why you need to get them right.

Why Branding Is Important

When your customers purchase from your business, they aren’t just buying a product or service – they are buying trust and confidence; they are trusting that their purchase will be of a high standard and do the required job. So how do they initially come to you? Where does the initial trust come from? The short answer is the marketing and promotion of your brand.

The purpose of branding is to ensure that you generate a positive experience which is backed up with high class efficient processes and up to date technology.

Your brand is the face of your business – it is the first interaction your customers have with you, and it is how they will initially decide to choose your company, or decide to remain with you.

A strong positive brand is also a form of immediate identification – it is a way of standing out in a crowded market, and it is a shorthand way for customers to become brand champions – even if they cannot remember details, a strong impact will impart something, and can lead to them advertising your brand for you.

What Values Do Consumers Look For?

Brand values aren’t limited to the product or service alone – they relate to your business as a whole; how you conduct yourself – be it in its postings, customer services or social media responses, its ethical values and awareness of its environmental impact, as well as accessibility (physical, digital or otherwise).

‘The power of brand purpose is also reflected in how much consumers are willing to pay – one in two people say they would pay more for a brand that supports a cause that’s important to them.’

In short, consumers are looking for:

  • Quality – Reliability and Understanding
  • Honesty / Transparency
  • Social Responsibility & Integrity
  • Consistency

It is vital to underscore that these factors should be present not only in the product or service, but reflected in the business as a whole.

  1. Quality – Reliability and Understanding

    With so many different products and variations available for purchase, consumers will look for the venue that has a strong reputation for quality, who can be relied upon to provide them with what they need, and who have a clear understanding of both the market and their consumer needs, especially when the consumer may know what they want – but not fully understand what the monetary value of the difference is.
  2. Honesty / Transparency 

    Strong relationships are built on trust, and your business is no different. Your customers want to know that what you tell them can be believed and trusted. This is true for the promises you make about your goods and services, and how you run your company.
    If you make promises about yourselves and your product, you need to make sure you keep them.

  3. Social Responsibility & Integrity 

    An increasing number of people are abandoning brands that do not demonstrate social responsibility. If you are not seen to be aware of your social and environmental responsibilities and taking action to make a measurable impact then you are putting yourself at a disadvantage. To alleviate these consumer fears, it is important that your company acts with integrity and actually follows through with any claims it makes regarding social and environmental activities.

  4. Consistency

    To handle the challenge of representing your business through so many different streams, consistency is key. If you have a clear vision and ‘voice’ for your brand, then you will find maintaining consumer interest easier – if people know what to expect from you (honesty and trust), it builds their confidence and allows them to feel as if they ‘know’ the brand, and they will feel more inclined to champion it.The most potent factor in building a reputation and brand identity is time – but just letting promotions run, or posting irregularly will see the public consciousness slip away from your brand. You must maintain a visible presence (whilst balancing on the line between enough content and too much), and a consistent image will strengthen that.

Getting Together a Brand Value Strategy

To go forward with optimizing the value of your brand, there are steps that you need to take:

  1. Examine Your Product / Service – What are its highlights?
    What makes it different from your competitors?
    What are the key points that will appeal to your customer?
    How can it benefit them?
  2. Ask Yourself Questions and Answer Them – Do customers believe us?
    Are we showing that we care?
    How can we make people’s lives better with our services?
    Is our current approach garnering the results we want?
  3. Engage With Your Team – Your employees are your greatest asset, find out what they think – both the good and the bad, and action any changes that will help the business.
  4. Be Aware of Trends and Changes in the Market ­– Change happens all the time, make sure you have your finger on the pulse with a comprehensive social media strategy, when changes happen or new trends come in, evaluate them – if they can be used in conjunction with your brand (remember consistency) then be positioned to take advantage of them.
  5. Be Seen – Even if you have the best strategy in the world on paper, it means nothing if you can’t action it and be seen. Get yourself out there and recognized.

‘Staying timely, accurate and relevant and congruent through all channels is a challenge. Mistakes can cost you your business. I believe the most important app, remains the human app, the real interaction by humans with humans within the business, creating experiences and value – however the market place and the marketing is digital, so a pro or a 3rd party contractor is not an option, but a must on your team.’
(Yves Preissler – Founder YP Consulting)

These are just a few ways in which you can create a strategy and increase your lead generation, with the end goal of increasing sales and customer satisfaction through a strong, vibrant and socially aware brand.

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