It’s said we only get one chance to make a good first impression. There are few areas where that’s truer than in marketing. The first interaction a customer has with your brand sets the stage for their perception of it. With a good first start, you improve the chances of building strong loyalty towards your brand and make for a successful working relationship with your customer(s) after that. So, how do you capture and make the most of that first moment of opportunity between your customer and your brand?
Find Your Feeling
People buy according to their emotions and values. How would you like to make your customers feel? Safe? Empowered? Belittled? Perhaps you make your customers feel safe, rebellious, or sexy. These feelings are straightforward, relatable, and can be grasped quickly – and that’s the secret to a good brand story. Emotions can be grasped promptly. So immediately articulate the feeling you wish to evoke in your audience. Put pen to paper and jot down as many words as possible to describe the sensations you wish to evoke throughout your brand.
Another way to tackle this is to consider your brand as a friend. If your brand was a person, how would it dress? How would it smell? Imagine your brand at a bar. Where would you find them?
In the centre of the dance floor? Or guarding the door, doing what it takes to ensure everybody is safe? When your customer is confronted with a choice between your brand and a competitor, they can immediately relate to your brand.
Find Your Story
Your brand story can be deliberate, unintentional or bespoke for your audience. Creating a brand narrative can feel overwhelming: What if your brand doesn’t have a purpose? The secret to a good brand story is to be honest and relatable. Cut through the noise and avoid fluffy language at all costs. Finding a connection with your audience, such as a place or another commonality, can be enough to create your brand story. Where having a brand with purpose can be significant, your story doesn’t need to be complicated. Given that most customers make up their minds about a brand within seconds, it’s better to stick with something simple based on subconscious decisions.
Find Your Audience
The third step in establishing a trustworthy, authentic brand personality lies in studying the people you wish to reach. By putting your audience first, you’ll establish a connection built on their values and aspirations – so you can build the emotional bond that keeps people coming back. Having your audience in mind ensures your brand personality will be relevant, relatable and meaningful to those you put it in front of. Careful audience research helps us ask the right questions to provide the best answers. A fully fleshed-out persona enables you to get in touch with who your brand is on the inside, which makes it easier to identify what they’ll look like on the outside.
Find Your Look
Your brand’s visual identity needs to speak for itself – clearly, so it can shine brighter than the rest. Customers don’t always have the time to hear the detailed story behind your brand, and with pictures telling 1000 words, your visual identity must convey the personality and story you’ve chosen. Your brand identity should encapsulate your story, from typeface to colour; it is essential to help your audience follow your story.
As a rule, warm colours like orange and red evoke passion and romance, whilst the cooler side of the colour wheel is associated with reliability and tranquillity. Examine the full spectrum of colours with your brand story in mind, picking out the ones that feel the most appropriate for the feelings you’d like to evoke in your audience. Looking at the language of colour and how it affects our decision-making can make all the difference when picking the right colours for your brand personality.
By bringing your brand to life through strategic visual design, you can resonate with your audience, create engagement, and differentiate your brand.
Find Your Voice
Copywriters are well-trained in examining the elements at the heart of your brand and using them to give it an authentic and unique voice.
A strong tone of voice – and strong can be quiet, subtle and understated, too – will help you build a relationship with your audience that feels consistent with the rest of your brand personality. The name your brand has, the tagline and the way you speak to your audience on social media, in advertising materials and online collateral should all feel like they’ve come from the same person. Building trust with the people you want to reach is challenging if there’s no consistency.
The whole thing about being and staying in business is largely connected to impressions and once you are able to get that aspect right, building on it can be pretty easier. It is important that you stretch yourself, wide enough, to ensure that your brand is known and accepted for what it truly is, and that is where what you put in matters. Impression is everything.