Your brand isn’t just a static, unchanging entity. It’s a fluid, ever-evolving thing with a physical and psychological presence in the world. When it’s created, you choose colors, tone of voice, imagery, and more.
Included in all that planning is brand strategy. How do you want to portray your business to your target audience? In this blog, we’ll discuss what brand strategy is, why you need one, and how a marketing partner can help you put all the pieces together.
What is Brand Strategy?
Brand strategy is the process of mapping where you want your brand to go for the time period you’re planning, whether it’s next quarter or next year. What are your goals? What is your brand message? How do you want to present your brand to your audience? What are you offering? What are your competitors doing? How can you do it better?
Brand strategy can encompass storytelling, brand identity, your mission, and more.
Difference Between Brand Identity and Brand Strategy
Whereas brand strategy is more goal-oriented, think of brand identity as the character behind the curtain. This is where you get into how you want your audience to perceive your brand. You’ll think about imagery, messaging, tone, and even personality. Are you fun? Formal? Conversational?
Why is Brand Strategy Important?
Again, think of your brand strategy as a roadmap. You wouldn’t start a road trip without a destination or a map, right (you could, but we’re planners)? If your brand is just floating out there in the ether, how is it standing out or attracting the attention of your audience?
You need an effective brand strategy to check against your efforts. A strategy can help you:
- Stay top-of-mind with your audience
- Scale your business
- Reach the right audience at the right time
- Create effective marketing efforts
- Increase brand awareness
- Pivot when you’re not seeing results
Brand Strategy vs. Brand Recognition vs. Brand Awareness
Here’s a quick explainer for brand strategy vs. brand recognition vs. brand awareness.
Brand strategy: As mentioned above, brand strategy will help you achieve your goals. It will also hold you accountable.
Brand recognition: This is how you stand out in the market. Successful branding looks like a strong logo and brand colors that help increase brand recognition.
Brand awareness: This is the extent to which consumers are familiar with your brand. Do they know what you are about? Do they know what you do/sell/your product or service?
How to Build a Brand Strategy
At Lynton, we take time to understand our clients when they come to us with brand strategy goals. Here’s what the process looks like:
- Discovery: We take a deep dive into the marketing the client is already doing to understand where there might be gaps we can fill or how we can bolster the marketing they’re already doing. This is where we’ll examine buyer personas, target market, and mission and suss out any challenges they’re facing.
- Planning: With all this information, we’ll plan out a strategy that aligns with the client’s goals. For example, if they want more leads, we’ll think of campaigns that can help achieve this, whether it’s paid ads, email nurtures, or blog posts.
- Execution: Once we’ve presented the strategy to the client, we’ll make any necessary changes depending on client feedback. Then, we put it in motion.
- Monitoring: We keep a close eye on how any client campaigns perform and make changes on the fly. We’ll do this with monthly reporting and quarterly deep dives. If an email in a nurture isn’t performing, but the others are, we’ll adjust that email to see how results change. If a CTA on a blog post isn’t getting clicks, we’ll change the messaging. Client success is our success.
What an Agency Needs for Brand Strategy
If you’re planning to use an agency to help you develop your brand strategy, here are a few things you should bring to the table to help.
- An open mind. You should always bring all your efforts back to your goals — don’t do something just to do it.
- Target audience information. Buyer personas or ideal client profiles will help here. If you don’t have that information, an agency can certainly help you create it.
- Brand identity. Have a clear vision of who you are and what voice you want to go to market with.
- Market research. You should know the answers to these questions:
- Who is visiting your website?
- How do visitors find you currently?
- Where are your customers hanging out online or otherwise?
- Who is the decision maker?
- Which products do your clients/customers typically purchase?
- What are the steps visitors take as they become a client/customer?
How a HubSpot Partner Can Support Your Brand Strategy
At Lynton, we take a white-glove approach to designing brand strategies. We don’t use cookie-cutter strategies that try to jam clients into a mold that doesn’t fit. In addition to the above, we take the opportunity to really get to know the inner workings of your company. We’ll look for factors that lie outside of marketing, like sales handoff and your business operations to make sure our process fits into yours.
The best part? A strategist is with you every step of the way — not just in the idea creation stage. We treat the whole process as a partnership. Clients are the experts of their brand, and we’re the experts in marketing.
Ready to develop or revisit your brand strategy with HubSpot and strategy pros? Reach out to our team today.
Increase brand awareness with a killer brand strategy
Our strategist can help you develop marketing strategies that align with your goals and boost your bottom line.